According to Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), most general industry incidents involve slips, trips, and falls.

They cause 15% of all accidental deaths, and are second only to motor vehicles as a cause of fatalities. The OSHA standards for walking/working surfaces apply to all permanent places of employment, except where only domestic, mining, or agricultural work is performed. Slips and trips can result in falls, possibly disability or death. The results of these accidents can be extremely costly to employers and employers.

As reported in 2013 by National Safety Council, “fall from the same level” ($7.94 billion) and “fall to lower level” ($5.35 billion) were the second and third highest injury causes of disabling workplace injuries in 2011.

What are the leading causes of slips, trips and falls in the workplace? Slips can occur when floors or other working surfaces become slippery due to wet or oily processes. This includes floor cleaning, leaks, or from materials and debris left in walkways. Uneven floor or working surfaces can lead to trips. This may include protruding nails and boards, bunched floor mats or uneven carpeting, holes or depressions in working surfaces, and also step-risers on stairs that are not uniform in height. Both slips and trips can result in falls, which can occur when ladders are not maintained properly, and when stairways and elevated working surfaces are not designed properly.

According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS):

  • There are two types of falls elevated falls and same-level falls;
  • 65% of fall-related injuries occur as a result of falls from same-level walking surfaces;
  • The services, wholesale, and retail trade industries together accounted for over 60% of injuries that resulted from same level falls;
  • The manufacturing sector alone accounted for 16 percent of injuries that resulted from same-level falls;
  • While same-level falls are more common, elevated falls are often the most serious and cause more severe injuries to a les number of people;
  • Over 60% of all elevated falls are from a height of less than 10 feet;
  • Over one million Americans suffer a slip, trip, and fall injury every year;
  • An estimated 20 30% of people who experience a slip and fall will suffer moderate to severe injuries such as bruises, hip fractures, or head injuries;
  • The most common fractures that occur from slip and fall accidents are fractures are of the spine, hip, forearm, leg, ankle, pelvis, upper arm, and hand;
  • Slip and fall accidents are the most common cause of traumatic brain injuries (TBI) and these account for 46% of fatal falls among older Americans;
  • Slips, trips and fall accidents can also cause other complications including: Death, Incapacitation, Broken bones and fractures, Long-term medical complications, Head trauma and Spinal cord injuries;
  • 1 in 6 of all lost-time work injuries result from slips, trips and falls;
  • Slips, trips and fall injuries make up almost 20 percent of all job related injuries;
  • It is estimated that these injuries result in an average of 11 days away from work;
  • Approximately 19,565 people die in the U.S. annually due to injuries caused by unintentional falls;
  • According to OSHA, slips, trips and falls cause 15% of all accidental deaths;
  • Slips, trips and fall injuries account for between 12 and 15 percent of all Workers’ Compensation expenses;
  • Slips, trip and fall injuries cost employers approximately $40,000 per incident;

OSHA mandates that employers shall provide a training program for each employee who might be exposed to fall hazards. Arbill offers a program that enables each employee to recognize the hazards of falling and trains each employee in the procedures to be followed in order to minimize these hazards. This program trains employees to understand how to install anchors, as well as how to use and maintain personal fall arrest systems and full body harnesses. Equipment inspections will also be conducted during the training. The awareness course is 4 hours in length. Arbill offers all levels of Fall Protection training.

Your Arbill representative can help assess your locations for workplace hazards and help build a culture of safety in your organization. Contact us or visit our website to learn more.