Entrance matting is an often overlooked and under appreciated building component. But when you stop and think about it, an entrance mat has a lot to do with how your building looks. It’s the first thing people see when entering your building, and it’s one of the few defences you have to keep the interior of your building looking nice.
Here are 6 surprising facts that will make you appreciate the importance of entrance matting:
1. In major cities like London, the daily atmospheric fallout of grit, grime and soot is estimated at 30 tonnes.
That’s a lot of potential dirt and contaminate that can be walked into your building, especially when you consider that 85% of dirt in a building is tracked in from the outside, either on the soles of shoes, on wheels or from airborne dust entering the building. Something needs to trap that dirt, and keep it in one place for easy cleaning…
2. It can cost £800 to remove 1kg of dirt from a building
According to industry experts, it can cost as much as £800 to remove a kilogram of dirt once it has spread throughout the building. Bear in mind that one person can bring in on average 0.58 grams of dirt per day. This means that 11 kilograms of dirt can be tracked in by only 1000 people coming through an entrance over a 20-day work period.
This can quickly add up to some staggering numbers over a year, even for buildings with moderate volumes of foot and wheeled traffic.
An effective entrance matting system can stop up to 95% of dirt getting into the building in the first place! Think of the savings to your budget!
3. 1500 people can remove 42% of the finish from a hard floor
Ceramic, stone, textile, wood, laminate or vinyl – it makes no difference what type of floor finish has been installed, its appearance and ultimately its structure will deteriorate from the effects of wet and dry soiling tracked into the building on the soles of shoes and tyre treads of wheeled traffic. Without an effective entrance mat, 42% of a floors finish in the first 1.8 metres of the entrance can be worn away by just 1500 people walking across it.
Reduced longevity and premature replacement of a floor finish can have a huge impact on maintenance budgets, not to mention the hassle of having to replace the whole floor.
4. Slips, trips and falls are the most reported injury by members of the public
A large proportion of slip, trip and fall incidents reported are due to slips on wet, dry or uneven floor surfaces.
Costs of these incidents to employers and the NHS are rather staggering at £512million and £133million respectively, not to mention the potential litigation costs!
An additional level of floor safety can go a long way to reduce these statistics. This could include:
- Careful floor surface selections
- Good management of cleaning regimes
- Providing effective entrance matting to dry, brush and scrape the shoe surface before the person steps out onto the floor surface
5. People don’t wipe their feet in public buildings
What!? Well, when you stop and think about it, do you wipe your feet when you enter a shopping centre or your office building? Unlike at home, where people will often stop on a small mat provided in the entrance and wipe their feet meticulously, when entering a public building people will generally rush through the entrance in the most direct way to get to their destination.
The only way to compensate for this is to provide a length of entrance matting sufficient enough to wipe the soles of their shoes for them (or make everyone take their shoes off before they enter your building).
6. Industry experts suggest that 6 metres of entrance matting is the optimum
Now, before you get skeptical that we’re just trying to sell more entrance matting, an independent study conducted by a Health and Safety Laboratory (an Agency of the H&S Executive) and the Entrance Flooring Systems Association looked at the length of matting required for reducing water ingress and stopping floors from becoming slippery. The results suggested:
- At low traffic areas (under 80 people per hour) 3 to 4 metres is the minimum length of matting required to adequately remove moisture.
- At medium traffic areas (400 people per hour) that minimum length increases to 6 to 7 metres,
- At high traffic areas (800+ people per hour) 8 to 10 metres may be required.
Whilst some standards state that entrance flooring systems should be around 2.1 metres, this study conclusively proved that 2.1 metres just isn’t enough. If you are unsure of your traffic rate coming through a particular entrance, 6 metres would be a happy medium allowing for roughly 8-10 foot falls.
For a full copy of the independent report: Reducing the slip risk at entrances, the role of matting, please contact the Entrance Flooring Association (EFSA) directly by clicking here.
CS offers a wide range of entrance matting systems, and for more information on our range, you can download our brochure or get in touch.