Soapy water, grease and oils, and food items are common in kitchens and can all cause slippery conditions. If something is spilled on the floor, it should be cleaned up immediately — a mop should be kept handy for this purpose.
Most often, kitchen workers will be carrying objects while walking. Boxes, stools, bags of groceries, etc., should not be left out on the floor where they can cause trips and falls. If possible, slip-resistant flooring or mats should be considered to minimize the potential for injury.
Workers need to be vigilant when climbing and descending stairs, climbing in and out of trucks, and while using ladders or step stools, to ensure they are free from slippery conditions. If possible, slip-resistant material should be used on all steps.
When pulling or pushing carts or lifting equipment, workers should analyze the path to the destination and take appropriate actions. Conditions that could cause a fall should be corrected or bypassed.
Glazed floor tile is not recommended for kitchens. Not only does glazed tile almost guarantee that anything breakable that is dropped on it will break, but a thin coating of oil or soapy water can make it very slippery.
In general, management should consider the following to reduce worker exposure to slips and falls:
- Require workers to wear shoes with slip-resistant soles
- Have workers clean up liquid spills as quickly as possible
- Coat building steps with a non-slip material
- Keep walkways and parking areas clear and unobstructed from debris, snow and ice
- Provide adequate lighting indoors and outdoors, including on walkways and in parking areas
- Inspect and properly maintain all portable ladders and step-stools
171-0966 (3/14) LC 14-81