Custodial managers are always looking for ways to prevent accidents within the facility. Here, manufacturers weigh in on tips that will help improve safety and prevent slips and falls.

Mark Roberts
Region Manager
The Andersen Company
Dalton, Georgia

JoAnn Durette
Vice President of Marketing
Mats Inc.
Stoughton, Massachusetts

Don Mistro
Senior Regional Sales Manager
Superior Manufacturing Group
Chicago, Illinois

What are your prevention tips for slips, trips and falls?

Roberts — First, be sure to use matting when at all possible, but seek the advice of your local expert as to the correct matting and all options available that will improve safety. Second, buy the correct size for the application. Using multiple smaller mats in an area creates more transition areas, thus creating more trip opportunities compared to larger single mats that have less transition for the end user. And lastly, purchase quality matting with substantial edges and backing that help keep the mat flat and in place. Quality matting is less likely to curl or shift underfoot.

Durette — Consider the length of walk-off matting. Incorporate as close to 30 linear feet of matting as possible and no less than 20 linear feet.
Then use a combination of matting products. Use the CleanZone approach to select the best type of product for each zone. At the exterior of the building (Zone 1) outdoor, covered entrance areas, choose an aggressive scraping product that is as maintenance-free as possible such as a foot grille. In the vestibule (Zone 2), those indoor spaces between the exterior and interior doors, choose a product that scrapes off soil and absorbs moisture. For indoor lobby areas (Zone 3), nylon fibers offer optimal performance in applications requiring additional moisture absorption.
Finally, practice proper routine maintenance: For example, in winter weather conditions, remove surface debris by vacuuming at least daily is critical.

Mistro — Make sure to use the correct mat for the space. The right mats do not cause trips and falls since the matting will provide a stable surface to walk on.  In order for matting to provide a stable surface, they need to have two essential components: 1. A non-slip top surface that allows a person to safely walk on, and; 2. A non-slip backing that allows the mat to stay in place and provide a stable surface to walk on.

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