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Published: July, 2018
There's nothing that could ruin a carefully and meticulously crafted landscape design quite like the inability to actually use and appreciate the end result. Which is why, when choosing an external floor tile or decking option, you need to consider the practical application as well as the aesthetics. Every open space demands something different, so it's essential to be aware of the slip resistance necessary for the specific project.
The accepted standard that designers and architects abide by in order to ensure they comply with building regulations and mitigate any potential injury claims is called DIN - ‘Deutsches Institut für Normung’ or German Institute of Standardisation.
As a rule, for sloped surfaces, most experts recommend the use of R12 at a minimum, with R13 being preferable. A slope as little as 5-degrees needs a minimum Pendulum Test Value (formerly referred to as Slip Resistance Value) of 45.
While not all floor tiles will have a rating assigned to them, if they are labelled as anti-slip then they will have an R (ramp test) rating - the equivalent of its likelihood to prevent slips on a flat surface. R ratings vary from R9, which are not tested but meet minimum standards, to R13, the highest slip resistance attainable.
In order to assign this R rating, a ramp is covered with the flooring material that is to be tested. The ramp angle increases in degrees until the tester, who is either barefoot or wearing a predetermined shoe type, slips. The test is then repeated on dry floors, wet flooring and contaminated floor surfaces. The results of the tests performed are averaged and the floor material is given an R rating.
The Floor Pendulum Testing method is used for measuring the slip/skid resistance of a road and airfield surface. This test is designed to mimic the point at which most slips occur – a pedestrian heel strike. This allows for the measurement of the dynamic coefficient of friction (CoF) and the aim is to be have a result as close to 1.0 as possible. Measurement of the CoF may differ based on conditions so it’s imperative the right method is used consistently during the trial. The PTV (Pendulum Test Value) is assigned based on the outcome of this experiment.
The PTV equates to an approximate accident risk and ranges from High (0-24) to moderate (25-35) and finally to low (36+). In real terms, a result of 36 means the probability of slipping is 1 in 1 million, however at 24, every 20th person might slip.
Effectively, there are two critical details to understand about anti-slip tiles: the measurement of the coefficient of friction and the role that slip resistance plays when it comes to avoiding and reducing risk.
This classification is used for footwear traffic and uses heavily-cleated EN:ISO 20345 safety boots with motor oil contamination during the evaluation. The following aspects have all been used in the UK as part of the appraisal:
This standard tests the slip resistance of flooring in barefoot conditions using soapy water as a contaminant. The tests are geared toward areas that are generally only accessible without shoes, like swimming pools and wet rooms. The test provides a good indication of wet slip resistance.
ABC classifications are given and is based on the angle at which a slip occurs while gradually increasing the incline. The classification ranges from A (12-17 degrees indicative of high moderate risk) to B (18-23 degrees which indicates moderate/low risk) and C (24 degrees and higher indicating low risk.)
For more information read our guide, ‘Anti-slip ratings explained’.
Our Terrafina wood-polymer, composite systems are non-slip and ideal for use on terraces and roof tops of all sizes.
Atria tiles are available in various styles and colours and are available in R9 (inside use) and R11 (outside use) slip resistance options.
If you want to learn more about slip ratings, or need help choosing the right tile or decking board for your space, reach out to one of our knowledgeable and experienced team members. We’ll work hard to streamline the entire process and ensure your project is complete on-budget, on-time and on-brief, so get in touch today.
*Disclaimer: The information given in this article and related guide, ‘Anti-slip ratings explained’ is for guidance only. While we endeavour to make sure all information is up to date and accurate, regulations change and advice can be misinterpreted. You should take professional advice before acting on any part of it.