RR747 - Assessment of slips safety information/literature provided by flooring and footwear suppliers

Nearly 11,000 workers suffered serious injury as a result of a slip or trip in 2007. A key element of HSE's work to reduce slips and trips is to raise awareness of how slip risks can be controlled through the use of suitable flooring and footwear.

Footwear suppliers use a variety of terms to describe their products, eg 'slip-resistant', 'anti-slip', 'improving grip performance' etc, and these can often mislead customers. Slip-resistant industrial footwear will normally have been tested according to European standards, but many manufacturers and suppliers do not give helpful additional information, such as the degree of slip resistance and the types of work environment for which their products are most suited.

For flooring, it is currently very difficult to make comparisons between products due to the number of tests used and specifications quoted. Where test data is provided, often very little explanation is given and the lay person could be easily confused or misled.

HSE maintains that employers must be provided with clear and helpful information that will enable them to source footwear and flooring products which are suitable for their work environment.

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 authors alone and do not necessarily reflect HSE policy.

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Updated 2021-04-23