If you’re a safety professional, that word is OSHA. (Yes, technically, it’s an acronym, but stick with me here.)
According to the Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA), “Slips, trips, and falls constitute the majority of general industry accidents. They cause 15% of all accidental deaths, and are second only to motor vehicles as a cause of fatalities.”
In fact, OSHA regulations state their point pretty clearly: “Employers have the responsibility to provide a safe workplace. Employers MUST provide their employees with a workplace that does not have serious hazards and follow all relevant OSHA safety and health standards.”
Now, slips and falls aren’t specifically regulated by OSHA, due to the countless variables they would have to consider – type of walking surface, type of slippery contaminant, slope of the surface, and even the gait of any given individual, not to mention the countless scenarios when all of these variables mix and match in a dangerous soup.
So while OSHA regulations may not be breathing down your neck when it comes specifically to slips and falls, responsible companies will not wait for a hazard to be regulated to take precautions.
Why? Two words: Cost and danger.
The cost of doing nothing in compliance with OSHA safety regulations far outweighs the cost of a well-run safety program. And it presents a danger to employee wellbeing, your company’s reputation, your safety record and your bottom line.
We have a hazard on the horizon. It’s unpredictable. It’s prolonged. It’s lethal. And it happens every year. It’s called winter. And if you work where there’s snow and ice, you run the risk of winter slips and falls bringing your company to a grinding halt.
We’re here to help you research when you’re ready.
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Jonathan Bell is President and CEO of Winter Walking. He has been helping organizations across a wide variety of business sectors prevent workplace slips and falls in ice and snow for over 20 years. Winter Walking currently helps some of the world’s largest organizations keep their employees both safer and more productive while working outdoors in the winter season. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.winterwalking.com.