Commercial environments present unique demands for flooring. Heavy foot traffic, machinery and an increased risk of impact mean that traditional options don’t fit the bill. In these environments, safety flooring is a specialist solution that provides the durability, easy maintenance and long life span needed to help support a business instead of hindering it. In this guide, we’ll cover what safety flooring is and everything you need to know when choosing the right solution for you.
What is Safety Flooring?
Specifically engineered to help reduce the risk of injuries and keep everyone safe in bustling environments, safety flooring is often referred to as anti-slip flooring. While this attribute is true, it tends to offer so much more than just a heightened abrasive surface. Safety flooring is a highly resilient and stain-resistant solution for businesses where spills and contamination are commonplace. It is there as a hardwearing and practical option, fitting in with both budget and safety requirements alongside the legal restrictions put in place in certain settings. In short, safety flooring is a heavy-duty solution for the toughest of environments.
Where is it used?
There are many commercial environments where safety flooring comes into play.
The risk of spillages of bodily fluids, medicines and other potentially harmful liquids is high in hospital environments. From inside operating theatres through to the wards, there is a need for a floor to provide the stability and safety needed to treat patients safely. Antibacterial floors reduce the risk of cross-contamination while an impervious surface prevents liquids and other harmful substances from ingraining themselves within the walkways. It is also important that nurses, Drs and other healthcare professionals can move around this bustling environment safely with secure and non-slip grounds for them to walk in.
How many times have you been in a supermarket and either dropped or seen someone drop a product? While many supermarkets deal with these spills quickly and efficiently, safety flooring is designed to offer a buffer and reduce the risk of hazards further. It also offers that impervious layer we mentioned above, reducing the risk of stains and marks if food products do come into contact with the floor. And, safety flooring in these environments allows trolleys, pushchairs and wheelchairs to be easily manoeuvred without an increased risk of slipping.
Another environment where spills and pools of liquid are common is within commercial kitchens. From cooking oils through to washing up liquids and spills of food, the risk of slips, trips and falls here is high. Safety flooring provides a clean, safe and reliable solution to help those within the catering industry meet the needs of their guests with more ease. Again, the impervious surface prevents staining while the heightened durability of safety flooring also minimises the risk of damage due to impact – for example, if a knife or heavy cooking pan was accidentally dropped.
Leisure Clubs/Swimming Pools
Walking to and from a swimming pool, stepping out of a shower or even moving around after an intense workout session. All of these activities carry with them a heightened risk of slips and trips. Any moisture on the ground, specifically if the water is found on both the ground and the feet of those walking by, can inhibit stability and reduce contact. In swimming pools specifically, the risk of slipping by young children who are running or playing is increased. And the potential impact of these falls can be significant. Safety flooring offers an anti-slip solution that still works when wet and doesn’t encourage the growth of mould, mildew or other moisture-related organisms.
What are the Main Properties?
The range of safety flooring available on the market is vast. There is a solution to suit every commercial environment, specifically tailored to offer the exact features needed. At Virtuoso Flooring, our selection has been tested to meet the most stringent criteria with a host of technical specs and features to choose from. The main properties you will find with safety flooring include:
- High slip resistance throughout the lifespan of the flooring, even when wet.
- High resilience against foot traffic and impact.
- Good stain resistance over time.
- Reliable antibacterial surface to minimise the risk of cross-contamination.
- An impervious finish to minimise absorption, staining or further damage.
Many of our options are also fitted with capping and coves to the wall. This acts as a barrier against moisture and dirt penetration, further extending the lifespan of the floor and reducing the build-up of unwanted contaminants over time.
Selecting the Right Safety Flooring?
Safety flooring doesn’t just fall into a single category. There are a host of choices out there and it’s important that you choose the right one. There is also a financial implication that comes with choosing these specialist floor options. And, while they are unavoidable for many businesses, some of the other commercial flooring styles such as resilient flooring or carpet tiles may better fit your needs. Ask yourself questions such as:
- How frequently do we experience spills in the workplace?
- Is there an increased risk of viral or bacterial contamination in our environment?
- Have we logged a high number of slips, trips or falls in the past year?
- What measures do we have in place already to prevent accidents due to slips, trips and falls?
Gaining a good understanding of what you’re looking for from your new flooring option is the best way to begin working your way through the range of options. Here at Virtuoso Flooring, we have over 20 years of experience in supporting commercial businesses when choosing the right safety flooring. Our Bath-based team also has the capacity to visit your workplace to understand your project with a selection of samples that you can view, touch and experience before making the final choice.
If you’re interested in learning more about safety flooring or would like to speak to one of our commercial floor installers today, you can request a callback or contact us directly via our website today.