Have you taken the time to evaluate your business’ surroundings? It’s a good idea to be on the lookout to protect not only your employees, but also customers from common business site risks.
Snow and ice can often hide damaged areas where people are prone to get injured, so it’s important to start these safety checks now in order to prevent future accidents this winter.
A great place to begin your safety checks is in areas where people can easily slip and fall. Use this checklist to reduce the risk of accidents.
Parking and Curbs
- Add brightly marked tire stops where parked vehicles could interfere with walkways. Pedestrians that have to walk on surfaces off the path are more likely to have an accident.
- Repair potholes as soon as possible. Not only are they are tripping hazard, but water in them can freeze and lead to a slipping accident. You can add gravel temporarily until permanent repairs can be made. Layer additional gravel to the high-traffic areas for the same reason.
- Unpainted curbs can be difficult to see. Paint curbs and ramps with nonslip yellow paint.
- Use proper signage to enforce parking rules, so that vehicles do not obstruct access to entrances and walks.
Walkways and Sidewalks
- Look for large cracks in the sidewalk. Repair with the appropriate materials.
- Concrete should be smooth and transition between sections. Even changes in elevation of ½” or less can cause tripping. If repairs cannot be made right away, provide warning signs such as cones to alert people of possible danger
Stairs and Ramps
- Approved handrails should be installed on at least one side of all steps with more than four stairs.
- Handrails should be rounded for a firm grip with a three-inch clearance between the handrail and wall.
- Stairs that have deteriorated must be repaired or replaced. Slip-resistant inserts are a great addition when stair treads are replaced.
- Wood or aluminum ramps can be very slippery when wet. Install traction strips on the walking surfaces of ramps
- Try to minimize raised borders and edging for landscaping. You can use garbage receptacles or pots as a way to prevent shortcuts through landscaping.
Spouts and Gutters
- Any area where discharge can lead to wet or icy conditions needs to be repaired with runoff underneath a walkway
These types of accidents can be quite costly, and as a business owner, you are more often than not liable. You will not only see high costs due to the actual incident, but also see indirect costs from higher insurance rates, loss of productivity, and potential legal fees. Protect yourself and your business by adopting the method of, “Better to be safe, than sorry.”
As always, we are here to help with any questions or concerns you may have, and are happy to look over your policies to ensure you are adequately covered in the event of incidents that could arise at your business.