While it may seem like winter is the time of year to be most concerned with slips, trips and falls, this is actually a serious problem year round.
The number one danger for slips, trips and falls in the spring or summer is mud. That’s right, mud.
Whether you’re at work – reading meters, loading your vehicle or heading out to set a pole – or at home – working your garden or out at the local fishing spot – chances are you’ll be traveling over some uneven ground. Mud can be surprisingly hard to spot.
How can you prevent slips, trips and falls? Use your SafeStart training to evaluate how you can decrease the risk of injury by avoiding the states of rushing or complacency.
Any time you aren’t completely sure of the condition of your surroundings, it is important to slow down. Walk slowly on any surfaces that might be muddy. Ask yourself – am I rushing? Once you recognize you are in a state of rushing, you will automatically slow your pace.
When you stop thinking you could be injured, that’s when the injury happens. You become complacent as you go through your work routine. Don’t assume that just because you’ve done the job before, or have been to the location before, that everything will go smoothly. These two states can easily lead to critical errors.
While any of the four critical errors can occur in these situations, the most likely one that you’ll encounter is a problem with balance, traction and grip.
- Be sure you’re wearing sturdy work shoes with nonskid soles.
- Hold on to any handrails that might be available.
- Always wipe your shoes on a mat when you come inside, especially in rainy weather. This not only increases your traction, but will also help keep the floors clean and dry so others don’t slip.
This all may seem like basic common sense, but just taking time to focus on potential hazards can make a big difference in keeping you and your co-workers injury-free. Please continue to apply your SafeStart training at home and in the workplace.
More information about this year’s June National Safety Month is available on The Compass.