Slip and fall prevention tips

taking accident prevention to the next level

Slips and falls due to excess water on the bathroom floors are one of the more frequently reported claims we see at Markel. Overflowing sinks and toilets can also lead to extensive repair and water extraction costs.  Left unmonitored, either can quickly result in inches of water on a gym floor.

Frequent inspections of floors, particularly entryway, bathroom, locker room and around water fountains, are important to the success of a good plan to prevent slip and falls. If you notice water or debris on the floor, clean it up immediately. If the floor is wet, post a highly visible warning sign to advise gym members and any guests of a potential hazardous condition. Because an overflowing toilet and ruptured pipes can quickly dump several gallons of water on the floor, it is important that staff know how to turn the water off if faced with this emergency. Keep in mind that commercial urinals and toilets may require additional steps to shut off the water at the source. Does your emergency action plan include how to shut off the water if you have to? Invite a plumber to your location to show staff what to do and then include those steps in your new hire orientation and staff training as a reference for the future.

Most importantly, keep your inspection process consistent and well documented should you need to refer to it later. Maintain this information with your other business records indefinitely.

  • Place skid-resistant, absorbent mats at all entrances. Inspect the mats frequently so they do not become tripping hazards, and replace frayed mats immediately.
  • Check your floors frequently and mop up excess moisture immediately. Post “Wet Floor” signs as necessary.
  • Document your efforts to keep your floors hazard free in your daily log or calendar and retain these records.

The frequency of your inspections depends on how often the restrooms are used and the number of clients in your facility each day. We recommend the minimum standard should be every hour or more frequently for high volume usage. Inspections should be thorough.  Check stalls, under fixtures, trash cans, and floor mats. If a stall is occupied, wait for it to become available so it can be checked. That way, nothing is overlooked.  

taking accident prevention to the next level
The information provided in this article is intended for general informational purposes only and should not be considered as all encompassing, or suitable for all situations, conditions, and environments. Please contact us at losscontrol@markel.com or your attorney if you have any questions. The article may not be linked to, copied, reproduced, republished, posted, or distributed in any way by non-policyholders of Markel®, without permission.