Winter can be a miserable season – days are shorter, the weather is chilly and often wet, and it’s peak time for colds and flu. Wet winter weather can also lead to an increased risk of slips and trips in the workplace.
So what are the best ways to “trip proof” your office this winter?
1. Arrange testing
Perhaps the most obvious way of making sure that your office and employees are protected against the risk of accidents in winter is to arrange floor slip testing using professional slip assessment services.
These professional services use a number of slip testing methods to determine what your key areas of risk are, and provide you with an appraisal of your office space. This includes whether your fit-out complies with Australian standards, whether you are exposed to a greater than usual risk of flooding or pooled water during periods of heavy rainfall, or whether there are any cleaning chemicals or other products which could interact badly with your floor by making it more slippery.
By arranging for testing, you can take steps to fix areas of weaknesses before you or your employees have the chance to sustain any injuries!
2. Be situationally aware
It is important that you also give some thought to how your premises is actually set up. For example, if you operate a business in the middle of the 15th floor of a building, chances are that you will not be as concerned about the risks of employees slipping on puddles of rainfall as somebody who runs a ground floor tenancy. In conjunction with advice from your slip testing expert, you can take steps to remedy issues that are particular to your premises.
3. Make and enforce “logical” rules
Getting wet and slippery is an inevitable part of winter in most places around the country. Tripping over soaked umbrellas left open in the reception area of your office by co-workers is not. Slips and trips can be avoided by ensuring that you have a company policy in place about where and how wet weather gear, including raincoats and umbrellas, is to be stored.
4. Perform obvious maintenance
It is important to address obvious risk factors well before the winter season starts. Do you have a corridor filled with archive boxes? Make sure that they are filed away properly before the wet kicks in.
Ensure that you have sufficient numbers of non-slip mats near entrances, lifts and anywhere else where the wintry elements might come inside. It is also important to make sure that all areas of your office are well lit, so that nobody slips on unseen hazards.
5. Enforce a strict cleaning regime
In addition to all of these steps, it is essential that there is a system in place for spillages or puddles to be dealt with immediately. Ensure that all of your staff members are aware of where the “wet floor” signage is, and know who to notify to clean up as soon as a water hazard has been identified.
Accidents can never be completely avoided. But by following these steps, you can help to minimise the chances of your employees injuring themselves at the office this winter.