ASTM International Group Holds Workshop to Enhance Slip-Related Measurement

ASTM International’s committee on pedestrian/walkway safety and footwear (F13) recently held a four-day workshop to test instruments that measure the risks of people slipping while walking on various surfaces. According to organizers, this could help researchers, manufacturers, and others looking to improve walkway safety.

The instruments – called walkway tribometers – assess slip resistance of walkway surfaces to evaluate the potential of people slipping.

Many tribometer manufacturers and users attended the June 21-24 workshop, held at the University of Southern California Musculoskeletal Biomechanics Research Laboratory. They tested four walkway surfaces with the goal of evaluating consistency and variance in measurements.

Data collected from this study will help establish new reference surfaces for ASTM International’s Standard Practice for Validation, Calibration, and Certification of Walkway Tribometers Using Reference Surfaces (F2508).

“The workshop was a major part of our latest project which aims to determine the sources of variability in tribometer measurements,” says workshop organizer Dr. Mark Blanchette, who chairs a subcommittee.  “Our goals are to create an improved suite of reference surfaces for F2508 and to identify slip resistance threshold values for safe walking that are specific to different types of tribometers.”

The update to the standard is an important step towards the improvement of walkway safety, but further collaborative efforts amongst researchers, tribometer manufacturers, and users are needed, noted Blanchette.

Industry Sectors

Issue Month
Issue Year