Slip and Fall Measurements and Regulations
ANSI A137.1 / COF Testing
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ADA OSHA Slip Regulations
Static Coefficient of Friction (SCOF) is defined as follows: The ratio of the horizontal component of force applied to a body that just overcomes the resistance to slipping to the vertical component of the weight of the object or force applied.
The higher the number, the lower probability of slipping occurs. Per NFSI B101.1 SCOF > .60 is considered “High Traction”. All SlipTech slip resistant flooring products fall into this tier of High Traction.
Friction is the action of one surface or object rubbing against another. There are two primary types of friction: dynamic friction and static friction. Dynamic friction is the friction between two moving surfaces or objects. Static friction is the friction between two objects that are not moving.
ADA OSHA Slip Regulations
ANSI (American National Standard Institute) was founded in 1918 with the mission “to enhance both the global competitiveness of U.S. business and the U.S. quality of life by promoting and facilitating voluntary consensus standards and conformity assessment systems, and safeguarding their integrity.” ANSI oversees the creation, promulgation, and use of thousands of norms and guidelines that directly impact businesses in nearly every sector — from acoustical devices to construction equipment, from dairy and livestock production to energy distribution, and many more.
The NFSI (National Floor Safety Institute) is a 501(c) (3) not-for-profit organization. NFSI was founded in 1997 with the intention of preventing slip and fall accidents by educating the public and businesses through informative programming, research, training, and product certification. NFSI certifies slip resistant flooring materials, coatings, chemical floor-cleaning products, and treatments.
ANSI and NFSI have devised various detailed standards for measuring the Coefficient of Friction (COF) of a surface.
B101.1 ANSI/NFSI Standard: Test Method for Measuring Wet SCOF of Common Hard-Surface Floor Materials.
B101.3 ANSI/NFSI Standard: Test Method for Measuring Wet DCOF of Common Hard-Surface Floor Materials (Including Action and Limit Thresholds for the Suitable Assessment of the Measured Values).
B101.5 ANSI/NFSI Standard: Standard Guide for Uniform Labeling Method for Identifying the Wet Static Coefficient of Friction (Traction) of Floor Coverings, Floor Coverings with Coatings, and Treated Floor Coverings.
ANSI/ASSE A1264.2 Standard: This standard sets forth provisions for protecting persons where there is potential for slipping and falling as a result of surface characteristics or conditions. There are three basic areas addressed in the standard: 1) provisions for reducing hazards; 2) test procedures and equipment; and 3) slip resistance guideline. The intent of this standard is to help in the reduction of falls due to conditions, which in some fashion are manageable. The standard in its present form provides for the minimum performance requirements necessary for increased safety on walking and working surfaces in the workplace.
The American with Disabilities Act (ADA) was enacted in 1990 to guarantee equal opportunities for individuals with disabilities. The ADA made it illegal to discriminate on the basis of disability in employment, transportation, telecommunications, state, and local government and public accommodations. In 2003 the ADA advisory on surface conditions issued “Bulletin 4” which recommended a static coefficient of friction (SCOF) value of 0.6 for level surfaces and .8 for ramps and inclined surfaces.
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) was founded in 1970 with the mission to “assure safe and healthful working conditions for working men and women by setting and enforcing standards and by providing training, outreach, education, and assistance.” OSHA does NOT currently have any published standards regarding slip resistance. However OSHA inspectors can issue citations to businesses and property owners for excessively slippery floors.