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Use Mats to Highlight Floor Hazards


While most people think of the front door when they think about commercial floor matting, did you know that you can also use matting to highlight potential trip hazards?

The most common trip-and-fall point in commercial buildings is the transitions between different areas with different flooring surfaces.  Walking from carpeting to tile, or from asphalt to linoleum, or any other change from one surface to another with a different coefficient of friction is a breeding ground for potential trips and falls, especially when it’s an area with other visual distractions that can capture the attention of pedestrians.

Floor hazards can lurk in unexpected areas too.  Flow-through or absorbent matting should be placed near sinks, water coolers, and ice machines in break rooms and lunchrooms to catch spilled water from becoming a slippery puddle.  Coffeemakers and vending machines can also be a source of liquid spills that should have matting as a safeguard.

Commercial kitchens are also rife with the potential for floor hazards.  Using proper drainage matting (made from grease-resistant nitrile rubber) can help both reduce the possibility of slipping and falling in spilled water, but also increase staff comfort due to rubber’s antifatigue properties.

The transition between factory floor and office area can also be a source of trip hazards.  Most production floors are dirtier, dustier, and have more debris than a typical office environment – having a scraper mat to bridge the gap can help ensure that your office floor stays cleaner and safer.

Antifatigue matting can also be used to reduce the long-term hazards of hard flooring.  Wherever you have workers standing or walking for hours at a time (like cashier stations or production lines), antifatigue matting should be used to help improve worker comfort, long-term spinal health, and overall morale.

Matting can even be used to mitigate temporary hazards.  For example, many general contractors doing tenant renovations in shopping malls will use knob-style matting to cover extension cords, smooth over uneven or unfinished tiles, and to help pick up drywall dust from public-accessible areas, helping to satisfy their requirements for due diligence.

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