Winter slips and falls are a leading cause of work injuries in the Upper Midwest, and one of the most common injuries we see at SFM.
According to SFM claims data:
- 25 percent of ice- and snow-related falls occur in parking lots
- 20 percent of slips and falls that occur in parking lots result in lost time from work
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, in 2016, there were 20,520 workplace slip-and-fall injuries involving ice, sleet or snow that required at least one day away from work to recuperate. This number doesn’t include falls from heights or through surfaces.
The average number of days to recover from these types of injuries varied in the Midwest. (See table below.)
Average days off work due to winter slips and falls
Days to recover and get back to work
Bureau of Labor Statistics data also show that there were thousands more winter slip-and-fall-related injuries that were minor and did not result in lost work time.
SFM estimates the average winter slip-and-fall lost-time claim to be between $40,000 and $45,000. The costs — direct and indirect — mount quickly and can’t be ignored.
Protect your workplace against winter slips and falls
Winter slips and falls can easily be avoided by taking some simple precautions. Let the SFM penguin help you raise awareness among your employees.
Tell employees to:
- Walk like a penguin by focusing on your footing and taking short, slow and flat-footed steps
- Take it slow
- Avoid using cell phones or carrying large loads while walking
- Walk on marked paths and avoid short cuts
- Wear proper footwear for the weather — no heels or smooth-soled shoes
- Watch for changing conditions — freezing, melting and refreezing are especially dangerous
- Step down and not out when getting out of a vehicle
- Step down off curbs, not out
- Report icy conditions to a supervisor or maintenance person
- Spread salt on ice
Order a winter slips and falls packet
Our "Avoid Winter Falls" packet helps you identify winter slip and fall hazards, work to control them, train employees and make them aware of potential hazards.
Posters, envelope stuffers and more
Use our winter slips and fall posters, table tents, envelope stuffers and email attachments to create awareness for your employees. Swap them out regularly to keep them fresh and noticeable. See below for a full listing of all of our slip and fall awareness materials.
Train staff to avoid winter slips and falls
Use our supervisor initiated training (SIT) and 5-minute solution tools to help train your employees. Many are specific to winter slips and falls and are quick and easy refreshers for your staff throughout the winter.
Safety product and vendor list
Check out our product and vendor list for ideas on outdoor traction footwear, snow and ice pre-treatments, snow scrapers and other safety gear that can help you prevent winter slips and falls.