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Innovative Technology Simulates Slips So Employees Don’t Have To

January 25, 2013 - 10:37am

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A Savannah River Remediation employee finds out how hazardous slippery conditions can be as part of a safety demonstration inside the URS Slip Simulator. A harness connected to a support beam allows participants to experience walking on slippery conditions without falling. | Photo by Energy Department

A Savannah River Remediation employee finds out how hazardous slippery conditions can be as part of a safety demonstration inside the URS Slip Simulator. A harness connected to a support beam allows participants to experience walking on slippery conditions without falling. | Photo by Energy Department

Imagine being harnessed to a support beam and then walking across a sheet of ice without falling.  Thanks to technology developed by Savannah River Remediation (SRR), employees at Savannah River Site are learning greater workplace safety skills.  The mobile URS Slip Simulator is a portable laboratory equipped with a video monitor, ceiling support beam and a walking surface, which resembles a sheet of ice when treated.

The mobile URS Slip Simulator is an example of innovations being implemented for safety by SRR, according to Patricia Allen, Director of Environmental, Safety, Health, Quality Assurance, and Contractor Assurance.

"Falls are a leading cause of injuries in the work place," Allen said. "SRR's goal is to continue to develop and identify innovative techniques to support an injury free work place."

The slip simulator experience reinforces SRR's MoveSMART Balance initiative, which provides education and information to employees in order to reduce the number of injuries due to slips, trips or falls. According to Kevin Smith, SRR Safety and Health Programs Manager, the simulator is something that fits right into SRR's safety and wellness effort.

"When going through the mobile slip simulator, employees experience what it is like when walking on slippery surfaces without falling," Smith said. "After their first trip over the surface, they receive instruction on the proper way to walk on such areas. Their second trip is usually much better."

The mobile slip simulator was constructed by URS earlier this year. The mobile simulator is being utilized by URS projects across the country and will be at the Savannah River Site (SRS) until next spring. All of SRR's employees are encouraged to experience the learning capability of the simulator.

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