Slip resistance, slip control and cleaning
Slipping is largely a factor of the contamination of a floor by spillage. Where possible the contamination should be eliminated or prevented from reaching the floor surface and, if unavoidable, the effect of the contamination should be limited through cleaning and design (e.g. falls and drainage).
Smooth floors that are laid in areas which are subject to spillage may
well contravene the Workplace (Health, Safety and Welfare) Regulations
1992. Specification of floors in these areas must take account of all
likely conditions (including change of use) and be selected accordingly.
A textured floor surface is an effective method of providing slip
resistance and can discharge the duty of an employer to provide
safe working conditions.
It must be noted that slip resistance is not a substitute for keeping the
floor free of contamination as far as possible, or providing effective
maintenance and cleaning.
Maintenance of flooring
Flooring should be subject to an effective schedule of maintenance, the most important part of which must include regular cleaning to a routine dictated by the usage patterns and traffic (safety, hygiene and appearance).
Additionally the floor should be inspected for hazards caused by conditions of use; this could form part of the cleaning schedule for a suitably responsible operative, or as part of a routine building inspection.
Unforeseen impact, abrasion, point-loading and chemical attack are potential causes of damage. Routine inspection may identify such issues before safety or hygiene are compromised.
Full consultation, at the time of specification will help to minimise the risk of under-performance.