What's In A Mat - The Latest Mat Technologies

by Mat Summers:

latest mat technologies.jpgWhat really goes into creating a great mat? Believe it or not there is a lot of innovation involved in modern mats being used in the workplace today. Let's talk the latest latest mat technologies.

Not Your Average Foam 

Materials used in the best anti-fatigue mats of today are not your average foam of yesteryear. Nitrile rubber foam is the best substance around for creating the optimal conditions of comfort as well as providing non-slip safety. This foam product is a synthetic rubber. Its official name is nitrile butadiene rubber (NBR). But all a consumer really needs to know is that it is durable and resilient. Because of its superior resistance to harsh chemicals, such as fuel, acids and oils, nitrile rubber mats are preferred by restaurants and the automotive and aeronautic industries. 

Stop The Shock

Anti-static mats that feature static dissipative technology (ESD matting) can protect workers by absorbing electrical discharges. This design also protects sensitive equipment from being damaged. When comparing ratings, keep in mind that a lower resistance means that the static is received more quickly by the mat. For example, a 10^1 - 10^5 rating absorbs static electricity quicker than a 10^10 - 10^14 rating. 

Beat The Heat

Workplace environments like a welding shop have certain conditions that pose a challenge for rubberized mats. Burning embers, sparks and open flames can all destroy a rubber mat. Technology has met that challenge with spark resistant mats. Sparks, or hot metal or embers, that come into contact with this type of mat meet a rubberized compound designed to handle temperatures up to 1500 centigrade for about 3 seconds. That means workers can grind and weld in comfort on anti-fatigue mats that won't go up in flames. They can navigate through the shop safely on mats designed to prevent them from slipping and falling as well as take the abuse of the heat their jobs produce. For the most demanding work environment, a spark resistant mat is the best that mat technology has to offer.

Why The Holes? 

If you examine an anti-fatigue mat you will probably notice holes. This is all part of the safety design of the mat. It allows for drainage of any spilled fluids. Small particles and debris are also trapped within the holes. So, for the best in safety in work areas where spills are likely, a bit of Swiss cheese design can prevent trips, slips and falls.

Does Texture Really Matter? 

Even workers who don footwear rated for safety can still slip and fall. Textured mats are proven to improve working conditions and reduce the number of slips and falls reported on the job. On average, nearly 25,000 people experience a slip and fall accident every year. Workers are not just more comfortable, but they are also more stable on a mat with a sure-grip surface finish. A textured mat is a must for a wet work area. However, any company that desires to create the safest workplace conditions should opt for textured mats.

Is A Yellow Stripe Safer? 

Yellow striping is the recommended guideline by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) to highlight areas where physical hazards pose a risk for falling, stumbling, tripping, etc. Anti-fatigue, slip resistant mats with a yellow border should be used for any workplace or public area where there is an interest to improve safety by preventing falls. Particular industries, such as commercial kitchens, production lines, and warehouses, can especially benefit from improved workplace safety conditions by using mats bordered with yellow striping.

Across The Board Features 

Mat technology now has features that span virtually every type of mat available. Options, such as interlocking capabilities, make it possible for a company to effectively improve safety anywhere in a workspace. Simply configure mats to an office or shop layout. Customization with colors, logos, and dimensions keep appearances professional in public spaces while also improving safety. To get a quote on the best workplace mats available, please contact us today. 

Learn how to prevent  slips and falls  

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