Chicken wire mesh is ideal for chicken enclosures and rabbit runs, but we wonder why it is still being used as a slip resistant measure when it’s a hazard in itself.
Many local authorities, country parks, forestry and environment management and maintenance tend to use it because it’s cheap and quick way (they believe) to take some measure to ensure no one slips on their patch. It’s a make do and mend solution, and undoubtedly, a very temporary fix.
The fact is that chicken wire is not fit for this purpose.
The next time you visit a country park or an open space you may see boardwalks and reclaimed wooden sleepers wrapped in chicken wire. It is supposed to prevent people from slipping – but it really doesn’t. Chicken wire can be dangerous and can create hazards and cause nasty injuries.
After a hard winter it will age quickly, rust out and the wire will begin to deteriorate, break and become loose. In some areas of heavy foot fall the wire starts to bulge out and becomes a trip hazard as well as a slipping one.
Boardwalks (elevated footpaths), walkway or causeways ensure whoever is using them can cross wet, fragile or marshy land and access areas that would be otherwise impossible. They can receive some high levels of foot traffic, dog traffic, joggers, cycle traffic and even horse riders.
So it’s not uncommon on boardwalks wrapped with chicken wire for there to be the possibility of pedestrians receiving cut ankles, dogs are prone to getting their pads torn or paws trapped in the rusty chicken wire mesh, not to mention young children who might slip and trip and graze their hands or face. Chicken wire should not be used to prevent slip hazards; it is not fit for purpose.
What is the alternative?
Unfortunately, many organisations have no option but to use this cheap and quick fix on surface safety due to budgetary constraints and do what they can to solve these hazards. Many of the conventional methods such as using chicken wire, rubber matting, belting, artificial turf, sand and paint fall short because whilst they might be the cheaper option, they actually end up contributing to slip hazards as they don’t offer the friction needed to prevent slips.
There is a much superior, safe and tidy product available which offers many maintenance free years. We believe there is really only one product that will tick all the boxes, and we don’t think there is even one negative about it.
It is neat and tidy and will provide the 100% total safeguard against slip and trip incidences. GRP is an acronym for Glass Reinforced Plastic or Glass Reinforced Polymer.
And if you are looking for longevity you have found it. It will last up to 20 years once set down with zero maintenance. GRP has many desirable properties which include:
- High strength to weight ratio
- Excellent durability
- Light in weight
- Electrically non-conductive
- Radar/radio wave transparent
The benefits of anti-slip sheets and panels
GripClad® Solid Preformed 4.0mm Thick Anti-Slip Sheets and Panels are an effective and economical way to make slip hazard flooring safe.
With easy retrofit installation this surface mounted product is a trusted and durable product that withstands medium to high footfall traffic in all types of hazardous environments. Ideal for wet or icy weather, slopes, steep inclines, unstable walkways, challenging footbridges or oily areas. It can be screwed, bolted, riveted or bonded onto surfaces including; wood, concrete, steel, chequer plate, even on open mesh steel grilles.
- Easy to install
- Easy to overlay damaged worn or badly designed steps
- Avoids high cost of replacement while significantly improving both the safety & indefinite lifespan of your stairs
- Non- conductive
- It does not support bacteria
- It is an extremely good fire retardant and low smoke emission characteristics
- 100% rust and corrosion resistant
- High impact and wear resistance
- Extreme environmental and UV resistance
- Highly resistant to chemical attack
These properties and many more, make for a highly versatile material with multifaceted applications, which can offer significant advantages over other materials like concrete, steel, other metals and non-reinforced thermoplastics e.g., nylon, polypropylene, ABS. With a flat sheet produced and incorporating a diamond hard aggregate surface it offers a high resistance to long term wear and is the very best long-term solution for outdoor applications.
They are designed to transform the danger zone on steps and walkways into a safe high traction, well contrasted safety surface that is safe under all conditions. These products are pre-finished, ready to install plates/covers just requiring a screw-down fix.
A further advantage with the anti-slip flat sheet is it can be re-used where the timbers need replacing, you can simply unscrew the anti-slip flat sheet and re-use on a new section of a step or walkway.
Slip resistance stats
The Health & Safety Executive use The Pendulum Test Value in accordance with British & European Standard.
|Four S Pendulum Value||Potential for Slip|
|Above 65||Extremely Low|
|35 to 65||Low|
|25 to 65||Moderate|
|25 and Below||High|
Chicken wire is a cheap and quick fix solution to anti-slip safety, but the cost of installing GripClad anti-slip products may far outweigh the cost of continued upkeep and maintenance or even the legal cost of a lawsuit if these quick fix solutions cause harm. For a long term safety solution and peace of mind, it is worth investing in the right product. Slip resistance properties of flooring materials are covered by various standards within Europe. BS7976 describes the specification, operation and calibration of the Pendulum test, used for assessment of floor surface slipperiness under both dry and contaminated conditions. The results are reported as Pendulum Test Value or Slip Resistance Value and are approximately 100 times the coefficient of friction. The Pendulum test is used routinely by the Health & Safety Laboratory on behalf of HSE. Our product is tested with a recorded value of 65 or above for dry conditions. Even when wet conditions were introduced the products still performed to a very high standard.
Chicken wire is a cheap and quick fix solution to anti-slip safety, but the cost of installing GripClad anti-slip products may far outweigh the cost of continued upkeep and maintenance or even the legal cost of a lawsuit if these quick fix solutions cause harm. For a long-term safety solution and peace of mind, it is worth investing in the right product.
Got a problem with slip hazards? Simply call us for a solution, and if you need a sample, just ask us.