Slip and fall injuries are far more common than most of us think. And they are surprisingly common in the workplace. Here’s a general guide to preventing workplace slip and fall injuries. We’ll also provide a few tips for dealing with the aftermath of such injuries.
Clean Up as Soon as Possible
It doesn’t matter if someone spilled coffee or the water fountain sprung a leak. It doesn’t matter if there is a solvent spill or water dripping off a pipe. Clean it up as soon as possible. If you can’t clean it up immediately, put warning signs up around it to minimize the odds of someone stepping on it and slipping.
Keep Things Clean
The stereotypical slip and fall accident is due to water on the floor, but almost anything can cause a slip and fall. For example, you could slip on oil on the concrete floor or plastic wrappers on the floor. This is why one of the best ways to prevent such accidents is cleaning things up. Remove debris and clutter from the floors. Take the time to remove obstacles like cardboard boxes or equipment, and you reduce the odds of trips and collisions, too.
Note that you need to keep both the inside and outside of your business clean. Remove the piles of leaves by doorways that people could slip on. Remove ice and snow regularly and watch out for frozen meltwater that can create a slip hazard on “cleared” walkways.
Make the Workplace Safer
There are a number of ways your processes, procedures and even the design of the workplace can make you safer. For example, have cords and cables covered in colored protective housings to minimize the risk of people tripping on them. Have people close cabinets and desk drawers when they’re not in use. Always have someone assigned to housekeeping or custodial duty to clean up spills when they occur, and have a formal process to report such issues. Consider putting in rough floor mats so that they don’t slide out from under someone. Always replace worn flooring so that it doesn’t become a trip hazard in its own right. If you currently have concrete flooring that needs replacing, it’s definitely worth checking out Gypsum Construction.
Have a formal process for reporting accidents. Don’t let someone dismiss a twisted ankle or strained wrist. Tracking incidents will lead to data on what causes them and what you should do to prevent them. You’ll have better odds of winning a worker’s compensation claim or personal injury suit if you can show that such incidents are rare and that you work to prevent them. Believe it or not, but things like slips and falls can actually result in life-changing injuries that the injured party might want to take legal action against a negligent party for. If you’re someone who has been injured like this, check out LawTX.com if you’re located in Texas for professional legal advice from injury lawyers within your state.
What Happens If There Is a Slip and Fall Injury?
You can’t prevent every slip and fall injury. When it happens, you need to have a plan for dealing with it. Render first aid, if it is necessary. Seeking legal help after a slip and fall injury can be the go-to option after such an accident, therefore also make sure to document the incident. Your business can’t afford to ignore horseplay or rules violations that may have contributed to the injury.
What if you’re the one who was injured? Whether you’re an employee or a guest, you may need to hire a slip and fall accident attorney. Document everything that happened. Seek medical attention even if you received first aid. This provides peace of mind, if you aren’t severely injured. And it determines the true extent of your injuries, if you are seriously injured. The longer you wait for a twisted ankle to heal that is actually broken, the longer your road to recovery. The longer you wait for a sprained ankle or ripped tendon to heal, the more likely it is that the responsible party can say that the injury didn’t happen when you slipped and fell.