Winter means snow, ice and slick floors. Now is the time to take precautions to keep yourself and customers safe as the temperatures drop. Slip and fall accidents are among the biggest winter weather safety concerns. People track in wet snow, slush or water making your floor slick and causing customers to slide. Slip and fall accidents are responsible for up to 30% of injuries to customers and employees.
In order to make your business or home safe, you need to start by cleaning your outdoor areas. You’ll want to sweep up any trash, debris and fallen leaves from sidewalks, paths and parking lots. Leaves can be especially dangerous because of how slick they get when they wet. Repair any cracks or holes in those areas as ice can accumulate and make walking more dangerous.
Clean your gutters. This is necessary before and after a winter storm. You don’t want ice to accumulate on gutters, downspouts and other outdoor water sources. Falling icicles from gutters can also hurt people as they walk by.
Next, put quality mats inside and outside your door. Mats that have scrapers or rough fibers to scrape debris off shoes work best. In addition to making your floors safer, mats will also keep them cleaner.
Make sure your indoor mats are dry. They won’t work if they’re too wet. It might be worth keeping an extra mat on hand for wet days so you can switch out a wet one with a dry one as needed.
Keep a mop nearby. As the floor gets wet, make sure an employee is ready to mop up any extra wet spots. It is extremely important to task an employee with cleaning up water and snow before it becomes a big safety problem.
Finally, put up safety signs. Wet floor warning signs will let customers know to be extra careful. Put them right inside the entrance so people know as they walk in the door. The wet floor signs are bright, inexpensive ways to let customers know the floors are slick.