In Canada over 42,000 workers get injured annually due to fall accidents. This number represents about 17% of the "time-loss injuries" that were accepted by workers' compensation boards or commissions across Canada (based on statistics from Association of Workers' Compensation Boards of Canada, 2011).
Statistics show that the majority (66%) of falls happen on the same level resulting from slips and trips. The remaining 34% are falls from a height. Falls from an elevation, such as falls from ladders, roofs, down stairs or from jumping to a lower level, etc., is discussed in the Safety Belts, Harnesses, and Lanyards document since each type of fall requires different features in a fall prevention program.
Slips happen where there is too little friction or traction between the footwear and the walking surface. Common causes of slips are:
- wet or oily surfaces
- occasional spills
- weather hazards
- loose, unanchored rugs or mats
- flooring or other walking surfaces that do not have same degree of traction in all areas
Trips happen when your foot collides (strikes, hits) an object causing you to lose the balance and, eventually fall. Common causes of tripping are:
- obstructed view
- poor lighting
- clutter in your way
- wrinkled carpeting
- uncovered cables
- bottom drawers not being closed
- uneven (steps, thresholds) walking surfaces
For more information on how to prevent falls and slips, you can access the CCOHS website by clicking on the link.