Falls and other pedestrian injuries are on the rise at the Lab and around the world. Analysis by EHS shows the factors contributing to these injuries include being distracted while walking, reading an e-device or papers, irregular step height, and carrying too many objects so that it is not possible to hold the handrail.
To improve safety, Honolulu is now fining people for viewing their smart phones while crossing the street. Amsterdam has embedded LED-illuminated strips in crosswalks. At the Lab, temporary chalk stencils remind staff to Walk Mindfully, Pocket Your Phone, and Hold the Rail.
The Lab’s irregular terrain can be dangerous, especially when sidewalks are wet or covered with tree debris. The Facilities Division does its part to maintain landscapes and improve roadways. To complement these efforts, employees are asked to stay alert while walking around the Lab.
What else can you do to help? Discuss potential safety hazards with your coworkers and other employees. If you see someone walking while looking at their phone, let them know you are concerned for their safety. In the lab or on the streets, if you are on the receiving end of this type of feedback, simply thank your colleague for caring about your well-being and consider changing your behavior.