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The most common cause of slips, trips and falls may surprise you.

If asked to name some of the leading causes of slips, trips and falls, you’d probably mention slippery or wet floors first. However, one safety analyst maintains that mats are actually more apt to result in someone slipping, tripping or falling over anything else, though.

Why do businesses use floor mats?

Think about all the businesses that you regularly frequent, including the bank, grocery store, restaurants or your job. All of them likely have a floor mat right there near every entryway.

Most Florida business owners put these there to capture the water, dirt and other debris so that no one tracks it into the building, thus saving them cleaning costs. They also do this because they know people often are focused on other things as they enter a business. They’re likely to miss hazardous debris accumulated there. Floor mats can provide an extra level of safety for visitors as opposed to nothing at all.

What’s so dangerous about floor mats?

Not all floor mats are of the same quality. Some are made of rubber and are heavy. They have grooves the trapped water and draw it down away from the mat’s surface. Others are fabric or fiber ones that have rubber around the edges. These tend to absorb liquid like a sponge, and their rubber edges often become worn and curled up, making for an excellent trip hazard.

More businesses have started using carpet tiles nearest their entryways instead of floor mats in recent years. Doing this isn’t an option for smaller areas, though. Companies that must use mats should select one that’s safety certified. They can also benefit from regularly replacing mats when they’re wet, or the edges start to curl up.

What to do if a floor mat leaves you injured

Most safety analysts will tell you that elderly individuals are most vulnerable to getting hurt when they slip, trip or fall on a floor mat. Anyone can suffer serious injuries such as broken bones, lacerations, contusions or head injuries, though. Incidents like these may leave you with lasting impairments that necessitate a lifetime of medical care. A slip-and-fall accidents attorney can go over how Florida law allows you to sue any negligent Sarasota party for medical bills and any pain and suffering you endured.

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