Injuries from slips, trips and falls are on the rise in the workplace according to a HSE report. In 2018, slips, trips and falls accounted for 25% of injuries reported in the workplace, however, this has increased to 33% in 2021.
The majority of injuries related to slips, trips and falls tend to be bruised limbs (namely joints, ankles, knees, wrists and elbows), however, if the head comes into contact with the ground it can lead to a traumatic brain injury and could be life changing. In fact, 2 fatalities a year are attributed to slips, trips and falls.
What are slips, trip and falls?
- Slips occur when the foot loses its grip on the walking surface
- Trips occur when an obstruction on the walking surface causes someone to stumble or fall
- Falls (at same height) occur when somebody slips or trips which results in a person coming to rest inadvertently on the ground or floor or other lower level.
How to prevent slips, trips and falls from occurring
All workplaces require a risk assessment, and for organisations that employ 5 or more people, this needs to be documented. Within your workplace risk assessment, slip, trip and fall hazards should be identified and the findings communicated with your employees.
The risk assessment will include control measures, however preventative measures such as workplace inspections should be carried out to identify potential slip and trip hazards.
An independent health and safety audit is a great way to identify workplace risks and areas for improvement which may be overlooked by internal staff.
- Ensure the floor is suitable for the work being carried out
- If you have carpet or lino, ensure that no edges are sticking up that could cause a trip hazard
- Ensure lighting is suitable for the work being carried out, and the floor can be seen clearly
- Maintain tidiness, including all walkways and corridors, especially those leading to emergency exits; and areas around common areas such as photocopiers
- Store items correctly, especially if they are stored on shelves to make sure nothing “falls off”
Don’t forget homeworkers
Employers have the same duty of care for their homeworkers as they do their onsite workers. With more people working from home, whether in a full-time or hybrid capacity, it is more important than ever to ensure their safety.
One of the most important things you can do is train your workforce in identifying potential hazards, what to do when they identify them, how to report near-misses to prevent them from happening and reporting accidents to prevent them from happening again.
Cardinus provides an easy solution to these challenges, with a variety of eLearning courses including a slips, trips and falls course where workers learn at their own pace and apply what they have learned to either their workplace (office) or their home working environment.
We can help
If you are unsure of your requirements, Cardinus has a number of specialised health and safety consultants who can provide tailored advice to you and your organisation.
Please contact [email protected] for further information and a demo of our software.