Preventing Slips, Trips & Falls on Your Property

Since 1989, “America’s Funniest Home Videos” (AFV) has aired every Sunday. This comedic show, enjoyed by families across the country, allows viewers to laugh at pets, babies and even adults being silly. Often, video clips are sent in of slipping, tripping and falling. For kids, slips, trips and falls can provide a chuckle – but in the world of facility management, this is no laughing matter.

Slips, trips and falls are a serious matter in workplace safety and facility management. Not only do they lead to serious injuries, but also tremendous costs. Liberty Mutual Insurance’s “2023 Workplace Safety Index” shares that in 2023, “Falls on the same level cost employers $8.98 billion per year.” Often, slips, trips and falls are the result of facilities and facility services not maintaining the building appropriately. An article at notes “slips, trips and falls accounted for over 211,640 cases [of injury] in 2020.” While some accidents can lead to slight or severe injury, some can unfortunately be fatal. As a result, this “makes them the second leading cause of fatalities in the workplace, next to transportation incidents.” In this article, we will discuss what steps can be taken to prevent slips, trips and falls in commercial buildings.

1.Proper Training

Training on any subject is essential to providing the proper education and plan of action. Unsafe conditions that should be covered in training can include spills, leaks, elevations/decreases within the floor and much more. Training should classify what is a slip, a trip and a fall, as well as showing examples. “Slips, Trips, and Falls: Protect Your Employees from Preventable Injuries” (TMullins, 2021) shares that “proper training for hazard awareness is the most effective way to avoid slip or trip injuries. Any safety orientation training or refresher course should include a reminder of the types of slip or trip hazards your workers may encounter at your facility, as well as how to safely navigate them.” For companies serving property management, it is critical to train appropriately on what actions can be taken to prevent slips, trips and falls.

2.Safety Signs

For any facility, no matter the size, signs are essential. Signs provide visual communication to gain one’s attention. One key sign used in facilities is the wet floor sign. Although its inventor and history are not definite, we know that the wet floor sign has been a part of facilities for a very long time to help prevent injuries. This sign’s role is to display areas where accidents or cleaning has occurred. The outcome of not displaying the wet floor sign when needed can result in slips, trips and falls. As a result, this can lead to serious injury and damage the reputation of one’s facility. By placing wet floor signs in areas needed, you are not only protecting those in the facility from potential injuries but also helping prevent liability costs.

3.Reporting Spills, Potential Hazards

With proper training and appropriate signage, hazards are often easy to recognize. However, when they are not noticed and not tended to immediately, the damage can increase and become even more dangerous. Knowing who to communicate with about potential slips, trips and falls is essential. Not only does it directly connect you with the individual who will resolve the conflict, but it will prevent others from getting injured. By communicating effectively to facility management or cleaning services of leaks, spills or other potential hazards, this can help combat future conflicts.

In conclusion, slips, trips and falls are dangerous when not tended to appropriately. These hazards can result in serious, even fatal, injuries. By providing appropriate training, signage and reporting methods, your facility can be a safer environment.


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