The long awaited release of a slip resistance handbook was released today. HB 198:2014 Guide to the specification and testing of slip resistance of pedestrian surfaces. The Handbook has been awaiting great anticipation this year which coincides with the introduction of prescriptive requirements within the National Construction Codes.
Committee BD-094, Slip Resistance of Flooring prepared the Handbook through Australian Standards Organisation and was published on 16 June 2014. The Handbook SA HB 198:2014 is entitled “Guide to the specification and testing of slip resistance of pedestrian surfaces”.
The handbook provides information on the Australian Standards which were recently published last year 2013, being AS 4586, Slip resistance classification of new pedestrian surface materials and AS 4663, Slip resistance measurement of existing pedestrian surfaces.
HB 198:2014 also sets out the parts of the Building Code of Australia (BCA) now known as the National Construction Codes (NCC) that require slip ratings in certain circumstances. It also outlines how to comply with the BCA.
Where the BCA is not applicable HB 198:2014 also outlines guidance as to what the general consensus is for slip ratings in public buildings. The slip ratings provided in the HB 198 include stair nosing’s, stair landings and pedestrian ramps. The guidelines provide those slip ratings to meet the BCA deemed-to-satisfy provisions.
HB 198 also notes that there appears that an ongoing revision of a more comprehensive document HB 197 is being undertaken and that the standing of either or both handbooks will be decided at a later date.
HB 198 includes within the contents:
- The background of the slip resistance handbook
- AS 4586, Slip resistance classification of new pedestrian surface materials
- AS 4663, Slip resistance measurement of existing pedestrian surfaces.
- Requirements of the new Building Codes
- Pedestrian floor surface selection guides
- How to design for slopes and ramps
- Referenced documents which include other Australian Standards
The Australian Handbook provides some guidance on flooring selection however it is noted that there are a large number of factors other than just the floor surface that can contribute and influence the risk of slipping on a floor considerably. It notes that not all risks will be alleviated through following HB 198, but will likely reduce certain risks should the guidelines be followed.
For your copy of Standards Australia HB 198:2014, it can be downloaded from SAI Global, who publish the Australian Standards documents.
If you require slip resistance testing to ensure that you meet the guidelines within Standards Australia HB 198, then please contact Safe Environments. Our expert Slip Check Team provide slip resistance testing throughout Australia being established in Sydney, an office in Melbourne and regularly undertaking slip resistance testing throughout Queensland and Brisbane.
Our reports are NATA endorsed for your assurance of quality in testing.
Author: Carl Strautins
As a principle at Safe Environments, Carl Strautins first started his career at CSIRO conducting research in slip resistance and developed the accelerated wear slip resistance test. He holds a degree in materials science, masters in occupational health and safety and a masters in science in occupational hygiene, Carl provides guidance to industry to minimise the risk of slip and fall incidents. He is engaged on a regular basis to provide expert opinion for disputes and legal proceedings.