Perceived floor slipperiness and floor roughness in a gait experiment

BACKGROUND: Slips and falls contribute to occupational injuries and fatalities globally. Both floor slipperiness and floor roughness affect the occurrence of slipping and falling. Investigations on fall-related phenomena are important for the safety and health of workers. OBJECTIVE: The purposes of this study were to: compare the perceived floor slipperiness before and after walking on the floor; compare the perceived floor slipperiness with and without shoes for males and females; discuss the perceived floor roughness based on barefoot walking; and establish regression models to describe the relationship between perceived floor slipperiness and actual friction of the floors. METHODS: Male and female subjects walked on 3 m walkways with or without shoes. The perceived floor slipperiness ratings both before and after their walk were collected. RESULTS: The perceived floor slipperiness both before and after walking were significantly affected by both floor and surface conditions. Gender, floor, surface, and footwear conditions were all significant factors affecting the adjustment of perceived floor slipperiness. The subjects made more adjustment on perceived floor slipperiness rating when they had shoes on than when they were barefooted. CONCLUSION: Regression models were established to describe the relationship between perceived floor slipperiness and floor coefficient of friction. These models may be used to estimate perceived floor slipperiness, or in reverse, the coefficient of friction of the floor, so as to prevent slipping and falling in workplaces.

Source : Yu R, Li KW. Work. 2014.
http://dx.doi.org/10.3233/WOR-141830

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