If you own a retail store that is quite busy with both customers and employees, then you probably know that you need to keep your business as tidy as possible. Not only does this cut down on general injuries, but it makes your store appear professional and inviting. However, slips and falls may occur in your business even if you keep areas neat and tidy. Unfortunately, individuals may claim negligence on your part and end up suing you. In the worst case scenario, you may need to pay out a personal injury settlement if the individual was injured in a substantial manner. To avoid this, follow the tips below to make sure that your floors are as safe as possible.
Make Sure Mats Are Secured
One of the best ways to avoid slip and fall accidents in your store is to place mats in front of doors so that rain, snow, and ice can be scraped off of boots and shoes. Scraper mats as well as polyester-based carpeted ones with a rubber underside are both good choices. However, mats can easily shift or move and cause a tripping hazard. A good way to prevent this is to secure the mats to the floor. For carpeted mats, use a double-sided carpeting tape on the underside to keep the mats in place. A general use non-slip adhesive product will work well. If you want extra security, then purchase vinyl tape made to bind carpeting to the floor during a home installation. While this tape is likely to be more expensive, it will be stronger than other tape varieties.
To help keep scraper mats in place, it is best to secure them permanently to your floor. These types of mats are meant to stay put when customers scuff their shoes across them. To help with this, purchase floors mat anchors like the ones made for vehicle floor mats. These anchors are small screws that anchor into the floor of your vehicle. A small protrusion sits on top of the screw. This part is slipped through a hole in the floor mat and a small button snaps on top to secure it. This same sort of anchor used for vehicle floor mats can be used for scraper mats too, since they feature open channels to collect water. Just make sure that the anchor protrusion is long enough to fit through an open channel.
Purchase two anchors for the top and bottom or left and right side of the mat. Use an electric drill to form holes in your floor to screw the anchors into. A regular or spade drill bit will work well to bore through wood or linoleum floors, but a tile bit is likely needed for tile or other hard flooring materials. Once the holes are created, add the screws, slip the protrusions through the mat, and secure the button snaps.
Set Shoe Standards
Having a spill clean up plan along with securing mats can cut down on slip accidents. However, your employees may be the ones slipping on floors if they do not wear the correct shoes inside your store. Setting standards for the correct shoes to wear can prevent this problem. Shoes with the right soles should be considered by all employees, so set up a store meeting to explain what kinds of soles are best for stability.
These shoes are ones made with rubber soles with a tread pattern that has grooves across it. These grooves or openings allow water and other liquids to flow through the sole. This will stop employees from hydroplaning and slipping if a spill does happen. The best pattern to help the water flow is a circular one, and this pattern should be relatively deep. Larger volumes of water can cascade underneath the shoe and the shoe will still be slip-resistant even when the sole wears down a bit. While the sole is the most important aspect of a shoe to keep it from slipping and sliding, shoes that tie with shoelaces are going to be more secure than ones that merely slip on the foot.
For more tips on how to avoid having to pay out personal injury settlements, talk with an experienced personal injury attorney about steps you can take to prevent injuries in your business.