Facilities safety is one of the most important topics on the agenda for businesses all over the country. Slips, trips, and falls lead to around 5 million emergency room visits every year. Facility Source reviews most of these accidents and has come to the conclusion that what is really needed is a greater understanding of the importance of safety.
Facility Source Reviews what Happens when Safety Isn’t Properly Considered
Every year, businesses lose out on some $11 billion as a result of poor safety. The cost of falls is now so high that they will soon become the most expensive injury to employers, looking solely at falls among employees. Consumer falls can lead to even more costs because they often start litigation, ruin reputations, and stop coming back. Yet, falls consider to be seen as a minor concern, even though 42% of businesses report one fall or more in the past 12 months, and 5% report five falls or more. Worst of all, fall prevention is incredibly easy.
Safe Facilities Are Attractive Facilities
Various things can cause falls, including loose materials, spills, water, the floor, slick surfaces, poor layout, humidity, and more. Measures are put in place, such as asking staff to wear non-slip shoes. However, this cannot be asked of customers. Hence, facilities managers need to think about more than just staff. Also, they must understand that falls can and should be avoided. With hindsight, almost all such accidents could have been avoided.
Best Practices for Safety
The most important thing is that all walkways are completely clear and that they have safe flooring. Entryways should have durable rugs to stop debris from coming in, slip resistant treads should be installed outdoors, and more. In order to lower the chance of injury, facilities managers should also:
- Make sure all problems are reported immediately, even if no accident has occurred yet.
- Ensure customers are aware of fall risks, such as due to them traipsing in water after heavy rainfall. Proper signage is essential.
- Resolve any issues as soon as possible. If they cannot be resolved instantly, proper signposting should make others aware of the presence of the risk and hazard.
- Focus on preventative facilities management so that all assets are maintained to their proper, safe condition.
- Run regular risk assessments so that no risks or hazards are missed.
- Ensure all work orders are followed through on, completing documents as and where necessary.
- Credit those who have identified risks or been able to prevent accidents.
- Have automated safety systems in place but in a non-obtrusive way, as customers don’t want to see this.
- Have emergency plans in place for various eventualities.
With the above tips, facilities managers can ensure that their facility is as safe as possible. This also ensures that workers can perform their jobs properly and that consumers won’t come to any harm. In turn, this increases employee engagement and customer satisfaction alike, which has a positive impact on productivity and profits. Clearly, safety is a major issue that should be addressed.