When planning a floor, it is essential that you consider the purpose for which it will be used. When people are using the floor in a variety of conditions, it is vital that you consider the anti-slip properties of the tiles you select. The HSE specify the use of the “Pendulum Test” to assess the suitability of tiles. The explanation from their website explains how this works.
The Pendulum Test Explained
Assessment of slipperiness: The HSE approach
The Workplace (Health, Safety and Welfare) Regulations 19921 require floors to be suitable, in good condition and free from obstructions. People must be able to move around safely.
Research carried out by HSL, in conjunction with the UK Slip Resistance Group (UKSRG) and the British Standards Institution, has shown that commercially available, portable scientific test instruments can accurately assess the slipperiness of flooring materials. HSL has developed a reliable and robust test method using these instruments to assess floor surface slipperiness. The method has been used as the basis of HSE and local authority advice and enforcement action.
Slips and trips are the most common cause of injury at work. On average, they cause over a third of all major injuries and over 40% of all reported injuries to members of the public. HSE statistics suggest that most of these accidents are slips, most of which happen when floor surfaces are contaminated (water, talc, grease, etc).
Research by HSL for HSE has shown that a combination of factors can contribute to slip accidents. HSL has developed a slip potential model, which identifies the important factors contributing to a slip.
> Find out more about anti-slip tiles at the HSE Website.
Direction of Test
BS 7976-2: 2002 (Slip Resistance)
The method of test is intended to assess the potential of slipping for people walking on a flooring material.
A pendulum attached to a spring loaded foot fitted with a standard rubber slider referenced Slider 96 (formally known as Four S Rubber) is allowed to swing so the slider contacts a dry or wet test flooring over a set distance. The extent to which the pendulum fails to reach its release height on the overswing is determined as a measurement of the slip resistance. The procedure is carried out in three directions, in one principle direction, at90° to this and at 45o to the principle direction.
UK Slip Resistance Group Guidelines
The following table contains guidelines recommended by the UK Slip resistance group – Issue 3 2005.
|High Slip Potential||0-24|
|Moderate Slip Potential||25-35|
|Low Slip Potential||36+|