Base on statistics gathered by the Association of Workers’ Compensation Boards of Canada in 2011, 42000 workers get injured annually due to fall-related accidents. Still quite a great number despite such accidents being preventable.
There are simple measures that business owners can take to reduce if not eliminate falls in the workplace, the first of which is identifying the hazards that might cause these accidents.
Three types of hazards should be identified: slipping hazards, tripping hazards and falls from heights. After identifying these, it is also recommended that examples of each are cited and suggestions on how to prevent them are shared among the workers involved.
Slips occur when there is little or no friction between the footwear and the walking surface.
– Oil spill from machinery
– Weather hazards
– Occasional spills from food, water, beverages, etc.
– Loose or unanchored mats
– Walkways that do not have enough texture or traction
– Good housekeeping
– Modifying of walking surfaces
– Wearing of proper footwear
– Appropriate walking pace
Trips happen when the foot collides with an object causing loss of balance.
– Poor lighting
– Broken pavement
– Loose carpets or flooring
– Garbage on the floor
– Poorly marked steps or curbs
– Clear walking areas from debris and clutter
– Provide sufficient lighting especially along high traffic areas
– Maintain flooring in good condition
– When carrying load, ensure that line of sight is free from obstruction
Fall from Heights
Slipping or tripping could cause fall from heights or it could be simply stepping off an elevated area. With this in mind, the best way to prevent falls is having your full attention on where you are and what you are doing.
– Be aware of where you are going
– Wear proper fall protection gear
– Fully utilize fall protection equipment
Workplaces may not be fully accident-proof but these occurrences could be minimized or even be prevented with enough caution and proper preparation.