Ineffective floor safety strategies continue to be a present a safety and liability risk for Australian businesses. Unmaintained floors and lack of attention to risks and hazards are key factors leading to slip, trip and fall accidents. To help prevent such accidents it is essential for facility managers to implement effective floor safety policies.
Local regulations and standards have been established and recently updated to enforce guidelines for minimum floor safety requirements. Facilities managers and building operators need to familiarise themselves with the new codes and classifications, but few have time to review and interpret all applicable regulations.
As a result, it is becoming increasingly challenging for facilities managers to take into account the mass of regulatory advice, identify optimal solutions and consider building aesthetics, cost and sustainability when designing floor safety protocols.
This white paper by 3M provides an overview of best practice in floor safety and highlights how best to meet compliance standards for the safety of occupants, pedestrians and to minimise the risk of litigation.
Legal obligations and compliance standards —summarised and simplified
Best practice for risk management
FM-related floor solutions (cleaning methods, maintenance frequency, etc)
Codes of practice to best manage hazards and risks
Compromised floor safety in commercial buildings present a liability risk for Australian businesses and is estimated to cost the economy billions of dollars in workers’ compensation, lost productivity and public liability claims per annum.
Floor-safety related injuries is second only to body stress injuries and based on these statistics, there are further opportunities to improve floor safety initiatives as these are not effective in fully eliminating floor-related safety hazards.
Hence, organisations and authorities such as Australian Standards and building Codes of Australia have reviewed and improved guidelines and regulations to reduce incident numbers.
This white paper streamlines all you need to know about how the safety act applies to floor safety, outlining the pitfalls, potential risks and solutions and best practice methods for effective facility management.
Rex O’Rourke is the Application Engineering Specialist for the Cleaning and Workplace Safety section of the Commercial Solutions Division of 3M Australia and 3M New Zealand. He provides technical support to the business and helps customers find solutions to their floor safety, cleaning and spill management.