|Slips, trips and falls are among the most common workplace injuries according to the US department of Labor. A PowerPoint presentation Slips, Trips and Falls Identification and Prevention from OSHA explains the economic and personal costs of slips, trips and falls. It also makes the point that many of these types of injuries are preventable and it outlines the causes of various accidents.|
Prevention and awareness of the environmental and human factors that contribute to these types of incidents can reduce injury and lost productivity.
ASTM 2966-13 Standard Guide for Snow and Ice Control for Walkway Surfaces details some of the measures to reduce the hazards of snow and ice. These include barricading, plowing and treating walks, preventing obstructed drains, monitoring conditions, and providing mats to remove water and snow from shoes. The ASTM standard also recommends developing written plans and diagrams to indicate how clean up, deicing and ice prevention will be prioritized and accomplished.
ASTM F1637 Standard Practice for Safe Walking Surfaces covers design and construction guidelines and minimum maintenance criteria for new and existing buildings and structures. This practice is intended to provide reasonably safe walking surfaces for pedestrians wearing ordinary footwear.
Data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics for the number of non-fatal falls, slips and trips from 2011-2013 is shown below. The CDC reports "Fall injuries constitute a considerable financial burden: workers’ compensation and medical costs associated with occupational fall incidents have been estimated at approximately $70 billion annually in the United Sates [NSC 2002]."