Winter in Philadelphia is a season of ice, and once the ground gets cold, workers and guests are at high risk for slip and fall accidents. This puts employers and business owners at a high risk of dealing with on-the-job employee injuries. Even if your area doesn’t receive much snow, it is wise to stay prepared. Some people are never stable even in the presence of a small amount of snow.
Trips, slips, and falls have been found to account for significant general workplace accidents with about 15% of them leading to deaths. These accidents are second after car accidents. During the winter season, business owners should take some precautions to minimize such incidences. The following are steps you can take to help you prevent slip and fall accidents during the cold weather months.
Buy Preventative Supplies
Whether you think you are going to have a warm winter season or not, it is wise to stock up on necessary materials used for preventing and removing ice and snow. These could include sand, scrapers, shovels, and salt or a type of ice melt. These measures will significantly help in getting rid of ice and snow.
Remove Hazards Quickly
Once the snow falls, it is necessary for you to clear the sensitive areas as quickly as possible. Some important areas to take care of first are the walkways, sidewalks, entrances and parking lots. This is crucial in maintaining a safe working environment. Make sure to do this before the working hours, if possible, to allow any ice that has formed to have some time to melt. Pay more attention to sensitive parts like uneven concrete and stairs as they carry more potential for accidents.
Wear Safe Shoes
Encourage your employees to wear the proper shoes during the cold season to make sure they are as safe as possible. It is extremely important to wear shoes or boots that have some tread to lower the chances of slipping in wintry weather. Dress shoes and high heeled shoes are especially dangerous as they can be are unstable even before encountering snow or ice.
Walk Like A Penguin
The shuffle or penguin walk is the safest way to walk on wet grounds. This involves strolling with eyes forward and keeping the knees slightly bent. You should take small steps focusing on the surface ahead. If the floor is very slippery, spreading your arms as you walk will assist you, as it enhances balance.
Putting up adequate lighting inside the workplace and outdoors can assist in cutting down on the number of falls and slips both employees and visitors suffer. Hazardous areas and steps are often hidden by shadows and therefore installing proper lighting could reduce the chances of slip and fall accidents.
Use Warning Signage
Install clear and well-stated signage. Make sure to use an eye-catching sign that will attract people’s attention so they notice the potential risks. Some of the areas that attention should be drawn to that could be potentially dangerous are uneven or loose concrete, uneven steps, and gaps in the sidewalk. Highlighting these issues will increase awareness of problem areas and hopefully, make workers and visitors more attentive to their surrounding.
Slip and fall accidents lead to numerous company losses which include:
- Reduced productivity
- Financial losses due to increased compensation fee
- Lack of experienced workers – if substitutes step in for injured experts
Most of these accidents can be avoided when employers and employees work together to minimize danger. Accidents can cause painful injuries that no one wants to suffer which can include:
- Muscle sprains
- Ligament Strains
- Compression fractures
- Herniated discs
- Long-term disabilities
As the business owner, you are at high risk of getting sued if such events happen to your employee at the workplace. You can avoid facing legal charges by ensuring that you have put up all the necessary measures required to prevent such accidents.