Slips, Trips, and Falls

Caution, wet floor sign with person falling.

You can slip when you lose your footing, you can trip when you catch your foot on or in something, and you fall when you come down suddenly. Spills, ice, snow, rain, loose mats, rugs, and stepladders are some of the common causes of slips, trips, and falls. In addition, poor lighting and clutter can cause injuries such as sprains, strains, bruises, bumps, fractures, scratches, and cuts.

Tips to Stay Safe

  • If you see something you might slip or trip on, tell your supervisor right away.
  • Clean up spills and anything slippery. Check with your supervisor about how to use cleaning products. Don’t use cleaners that could make the floor slippery.
  • Clear walkways, stairs, and lobbies of anything that might be a tripping hazard, such as cords, wires, empty boxes, and clutter.
  • Make sure that floor mats lay flat rather than wrinkled or bunched.
  • Use handrails when you walk up and down steps.
  • Before using any ladder or stepladder, make sure it opens fully.
  • Check that ladder extensions are fully locked and that the ladder legs are stable on a flat, non-slippery surface.
  • Clean off any slippery material on the rungs, steps, or feet of a ladder before you use it.
  • Don’t go over the load limit noted on the ladder.


Slips, trips, and falls are common causes of injuries in retail stores.

Falls from portable ladders (step, straight, combination and extension) are one of the leading causes of occupational fatalities and injuries.

Find Out More

Slip-Resistant Shoes Reduce Food Services Worker Slip Injuries
Learn how 5-star rated slip-resistant shoes can reduce food services worker slip injuries.

Preventing Slips, Trips, and Falls in Wholesale and Retail Trade Establishments
DHHS (NIOSH) Publication Number 2011-100

Slip, Trip, and Fall Prevention for Healthcare Workers.
DHHS (NIOSH) Publication Number 2011-123

Portable Ladder Safety, OSHA 3246-09N-05