Slip Falls are a Major Concern in the Commercial Kitchen Environment - Consider these 5 points.

Spills, heavy foot traffic and potentially dangerous equipment can add up to problems for you and your employees. Why not choose a floor covering designed with slip falls in mind? Here are five points of comparison between the most popular floor systems available. Is the floor you choose giving you the best protection against slip falls?

Quarry Tile


Before Installation

Yes, Metropolitan Ceramics quarry tile is tested for slip resistance using the Dynamic Coefficient of Friction (DCOF) Act Test (wet). All Metropolitan Ceramics products well exceed the .42 threshold, testing above .60. Added slip resistance products test above .70.

 

Seamless Epoxy / Urethan Floor


After Installation

Floors can only be tested after installation. Floors with the same formula vary because installation crews vary in knowledge and experience. Some companies choose not to have floors tested but instead, suggest laying a sample floor area for employees to walk on – then see if they slip.

Stained Concrete Floor


After Installation

When tested, it is done after installation using some form of tribometer. Floors vary significantly because of stains, sealers, and traction additives used. Also, installation crews vary in knowledge and experience. It is essential to understand the test method used for the floor you are considering.

Vinyl Floor


After Installation

When tested, it is usually done after installation. Floors are tested using various types of tribometers. It is important to understand the test method used for the floor you are considering, how that testing compares with others available, and for what conditions – wet /dry – are they testing.

Quarry Tile


Quarry tile is unglazed and hard-fired. With proper maintenance, a Metropolitan Ceramics’ quarry tile floor will maintain a slip resistance well above the DCOF Acu Test (wet) threshold of .42 for the life of the installation. XA Abrasive products will continue to provided added slip resistance even as the additives show slight wear over time.

Seamless Epoxy / Urethan Floor


An epoxy/urethane floor creates a very smooth surface that can become very slippery when wet with spills of water, grease or oil. For added slip resistance, aggregates like quartz and silica are broadcast over the floor (usually by hand) during the installation process. In a commercial kitchen setting, foot traffic and roller traffic can disperse aggregate and poor broadcasting may leave unprotected areas.

Stained Concrete Floor


Like an epoxy floor, a smooth, stained concrete floor can become slippery when wet with water, grease, and oil. To add slip resistance, stained concrete top coatings are embedded with aggregate. With wear, this additive will be disbursed, leaving the floor vulnerable.

Vinyl Floor


Vinyl floors vary in slip resistance. Designs pressed into the surface help with slipping, as do matte finishes. Vinyl can still become slippery when wet. Coatings are sometimes used to help with slip resistance. Heavy foot traffic and cleaning can wear down protective coatings and top layers of the floor and negatively affect slip resistance.

Quarry Tile


Before Installation

Metropolitan Ceramics’ quarry tiles do not require top coatings with additives for slip resistance. Metropolitan does manufacture XA Abrasive with a combination of silicon carbide embedded on the surface and metallic particles throughout the body of the tile for additional slip resistance. Although these additives will slough off slightly over time, an XA floor will perform at a high level of protection for the life of the building.

Seamless Epoxy / Urethan Floor


As part of installation

Yes, additives are necessary and are usually added during installation. An epoxy/urethane seamless floor can become extremely slippery in wet conditions. For use in commercial kitchens, adding aggregate is required as part of the installation. This additive is typically broadcast by hand over a layer just below the top coat. The effectiveness of the additive can depend on the thickness of the coating and the quality of the installer.

Stained Concrete Floor


As part of Installation

Yes, additives are necessary and are usually added during installation. A stained concrete floor can become extremely slippery in wet areas. For use in commercial kitchens, an additive is likely required as part of a final protective coating. The effectiveness of the additive can depend on the type of additive, type of coating, and the quality of the installer.

Vinyl Floor


After Installation

Vinyl floors vary in slip resistance. Designs pressed into the surface help with slipping, as do matte finishes. Vinyl flooring is often used in commercial kitchens without additives. Aftermarket coatings with additives can help with slip resistance, and owners may choose to apply these for more protection.

Quarry Tile


Installation should not impact the slip resistance of a ceramic quarry tile floor. Installation standards for ceramic quarry tile are well documented. Using a certified ceramic tile installer is always recommended. Grouted ceramic tile is one of the oldest and best understood floor coverings to prep for and install.

Seamless Epoxy / Urethan Floor


There are many different seamless floor coating systems available, and there are many different formulations. Installation of a seamless floor depends on the correct prep work and follow-through. Standards vary greatly, and the floor’s slip resistance is very much in the installer’s hands. Done incorrectly and the floor will be compromised along with its slip resisting capabilities. Inconsistencies in applying the aggregate can be problem. Ideally, this needs to be done during the initial installation of the product.

Stained Concrete Floor


Installation can impact the slip resistance of a stained concrete floor if the slip resisting top coat is not applied correctly. It is up to the installer to carefully follow the manufacturer’s directions for use. Done incorrectly, and the slip resistance can be compromised.

Vinyl Floor


The slip resistance of a vinyl floor should not be affected by the installation. While there are different types of vinyl composite floors; VCT, LVT and sheet, Installation procedures are well documented for each type.

Quarry Tile


Before Installation

Besides slight wear on the additives used in the Metropolitan Ceramics XA Abrasive product, proper maintenance and cleaning should not affect slip resistance. Care should be taken to follow an appropriate cleaning schedule using neutral cleaners and clean rinse water. Only penetrating sealers should be considered for sealing the grout and tile. When properly installed and maintained, repairs should be minimal, and maintenance should not affect slip resistance. Poor maintenance can affect slip resistance.

Seamless Epoxy / Urethan Floor


After Installation

Cleaning crews need to be aware of the specific cleaning instructions for their type of seamless floor formulation. Cleaning instructions will vary. Failure to follow proper cleaning guidelines can negatively impact slip resistance. Repairs are a reasonably common occurrence with seamless coating floors. These also need to be carried out correctly, or the floor’s slip resistance may be compromised.

Stained Concrete Floor


After Installation

The cleaning of stained concrete floors is relatively straightforward but might vary based on the type of sealer and wax used. Too aggressive scrubbing can remove aggregate from the surface. Cracks developing in concrete are reasonably common, so repairs will need to be made. Stains and sealers will need to be re-applied. These changes to the floor’s surface are inevitable, and all repairs and reapplications have the potential to affect slip resistance.

Vinyl Floor


After Installation

Vinyl is less durable than other materials like concrete or ceramic quarry tile. Cleaning needs to be carried out with this in mind. Harsh scrubbing can compromise the surface and affect slip resistance. Vinyl floors also vary in surface treatment and composition, so following directions for a specific brand is essential. Inadequate or incorrect cleaning can have a negative impact on slip resistance.