OSHA Publishes Updated Slip, Trips and Falls Rule

In mid-November, OSHA published its long-awaited final rule on slips, trips and falls. The rule becomes effective on Jan. 17, 2017, and will affect approximately 112 million workers at seven million worksites.

In 2014, falls, slips and trips accounted for 17 percent of all fatal work injuries, second only to transportation accidents. OSHA estimates that, on average, approximately 202,066 serious (lost-workday) injuries and 345 fatalities occur annually among workers directly affected by the final standard. It estimates the new rule will prevent 29 fatalities and more than 5,842 injuries annually.

The final rule updates OSHA’s general industry Walking Working Surfaces standards specific to slip, trip and fall hazards. Assistant Secretary of Labor for Occupational Safety and Health Dr. David Michaels said, “OSHA believes advances in technology and greater flexibility will reduce worker deaths and injuries from falls.” The final rule on Walking-Working Surfaces and Personal Fall Protection Systems protects workers in general industry by updating and clarifying standards and adding training and inspection requirements.