In the UK, slip and trip accidents lead to more RIDDOR reportable major injury accidents in the workplace than any other type of accident. Approximately three quarters of these accidents are slips, and the remaining quarter are trips. In order to understand the underlying causes of these accidents, it is important to be able to accurately assess the slip resistance of floor surface materials. The Health & Safety Executive (HSE) currently favours the 'Pendulum' coefficient of friction test for the assessment of pedestrian slip risk in 'on-site' conditions. In some workplace situations, more complex floor surfaces are specified, these can include profiled floor surfaces, where a raised pattern is perceived to give enhanced slip resistance. The materials tend to be resistant to contaminants and corrosion, so they are often used where significant contamination occurs. It is appreciated that the slip resistance reading obtained with the pendulum can be erroneously influenced by the pattern of profiled surfaces, unless used by an operator with significant expertise.
This report and the work it describes were funded by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE). Its contents, including any opinions and/or conclusions expressed, are those of the author alone and do not necessarily reflect HSE policy.
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