watch for ice polar bear

When we think about winter in Anchorage, we think about plugging our cars in for 30 minutes before starting them, shoveling our sidewalk so we can get to our car, and the expected longer commute it will take to get to work because someone will probably be in the ditch and cause a 10 minute delay in traffic.  However business owners, property managers, and the folks who walk to work worry about what is under the snow, and how to keep it hazardous free.

The National Floor Safety Institute reports that the average cost of a customer slip and fall accident is anywhere from $60,000 to $100,000 per claim.

While it’s difficult to find reliable data when researching statistics online, data consistently shows that slip and falls are in the top 10 causes of injuries for employees and customers.

What can you do to prevent a customer or employee from a slip and fall? Here are the 5 tips that we suggest.

-Utilize Ice melt to keep walkways clear. Even a light layer will help prevent snow from being packed down to the concrete. There are some ice melt that changes color from blue to white as it loses it effectiveness.

-Use Gravel on low spots in walkways that consistently have standing water. Even when the walkway thaws during warm spells, then refreezes at night, the gravel will continue to provide traction where ice melt may get diluted and become ineffective.

-Don’t wait until it stops snowing to shovel your sidewalks. If it snows throughout the day, keep it clear by regularly shoveling. Very light snowfalls can usually be melted of with just an application of ice melt.

-Utilize a professional snow and ice management company for commercial properties to help limit your exposure. Commercial properties open to the public are significantly more likely to have a claim against them. A contract with a snow removal company to maintain sidewalks will help limit your liability, and can pay for itself over the long run.

-Keep a log of site inspections. This daily/weekly log should show when your employees/contractor are checking for dangerous conditions, and what materials they are applying to prevent them. This will become vital if a slip and fall claim were to arise.