Fluid-applied floor coatings, such as epoxies and urethanes, can be used to create beautifully smooth finishes. However, installing a smooth system in an improper area can result in poor traction and slip-and-fall hazards for people working or visiting the area. Slippery floors can be equally problematic for vehicles, which can sometimes skid on high-gloss surfaces in commercial facilities.
Lack of traction can be especially dangerous in entryways and lobbies, where pedestrians track in rain and snow from the inclement weather, increasing risk of a slip and fall accident. Within commercial facilities, spills of chemicals, liquids, oils, or grease can pose similar problems.
Grit or anti-slip additives can be broadcast into virtually any floor coating system to help create a safer walking surface and thus help reduce the risk of slip and fall incidents.
There are many different methods of measuring slip resistance -- also known as testing for Coefficient of Friction (COF) -- in use today around the world. The Horizontal Dynamometer Pull-Meter Test, ASTM C-1028, is one of the most commonly used in the United States. However, most experts agree that each of the currently available methods have certain flaws when applied to real life situations. At the core of the problem are the nearly unlimited variables involved in an individual simply walking across a floor.
Consider the influences of the flooring material and surface texture, in addition to the physics of a given pedestrian’s unique gait, walking rhythm and speed, balance, physical strength and keenness of vision, body weight, footwear materials and texture. Try to combine these with environmental influences, such as room illumination, spilled liquids of various viscosities and composition, or the presence of scattered particles or fine powders on the floor, and the dilemma of agreeing on a meaningful test method becomes clear. As a result, despite rumors to the contrary, there is no clear slip resistance requirement or regulation in place in the U.S. to date.
Until science can settle upon an appropriate test method, managers must do what they can to help prevent slip-and-fall events amongst employees and visitors. The professionals at Tennant Coatings can help. Because the level of slip-inhibiting aggregate used in our coatings is fully adjustable, certified Tennant contractors can install the texture your facility prefers. In locations of concern, slip-resistant trial areas can be installed, subjected to normal traffic, and evaluated by users. The selected surface texture can then be used as the standard for subsequent flooring installation throughout the area. In the absence of official slip-resistance regulations, this option can be an ideal solution.
For use in areas where water or spillage creates a need for extra traction
Tennant offers two products to help you achieve the level of slip resistance appropriate for areas of concern, within your facility. The higher the mesh number, the smaller the particle, the less traction it will afford.
Typically, once a final topcoat is applied, the grit is then broadcasted directly into the wet product. As the product dries the grit then becomes fixed in place, allowing it to provide additional traction.
When adding grit to floor coating systems, as previously mentioned, Tennant offers two grades of aggregate. In addition, the different grades allow installers to create various levels of slip-inhibiting surface texture in accordance with facility and operational needs. Choose between light, medium and heavy textures, depending on the needs of the specific area, for example, the amount of water, traffic, oils and other slick contaminants that may end up on the floor.
When installing a Tennant Coating system, typically the first step is to apply an epoxy primer followed by the other layers pertaining to the system of choice. However, in cases where an epoxy primer is not applied, the 413 bonding additive may be added directly into the product of choice to help ensure a secure bond between the coating and the concrete substrate. The 413 bonding additive can be used with Tennant’s Eco-HTS™ 100, Eco-LTS™ and WearGuard™-240.
Tennant has been an innovator in the flooring industry since 1870. All three additives match the reliability and quality our customers have come to expect from both our floor cleaning machines as well as our high performance coatings and finishes.
If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact us today and speak with one of our flooring experts.
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