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Cheap Floor Tests for Businesses and Lawyers available in In all Major UK Cities and nearby Towns including  Floor Slip Testing  in Scotland – Aberdeen, Glasgow, Edinburgh and Inverness / Floor Safety Risk Assessments in North East England – Middlesborough, South Shields, Newcastle, Stockton on Tees, Darlington / Floor Resistance Testing in North West England – Manchester, Lancaster, Liverpool, Runcorn, Preston, Blackpool, Blackburn Bury, Bolton, Warrington, Widnes, St.Helens (Cheshire) Birkenhead, Ellesmere Port, Chester, Crewe, Oldham, Stockport, Trafford Park. Rochdale, Congleton, Sandbach Macclesfield, / Floor Friction Testing in Wales in Cardiff, Newport, Swansea, Colwyn, Rhyl, Bangor / Pendulum Tests in Northern Central England – Sheffield, Leeds, Bradford (Yorkshire), Rotherham, Wakefield, / Slip Resistance Tests in East England in Hull, Humberside and Lincoln / BS7976-2 Pendulum Tests in the Midlands in– Nottingham, Derby, Rugby, Stoke, Stafford, Birmingham, Wolverhampton, Worcester, / Slip Resistance Flooring Tests in Central England – Northampton, Rugby, Derby, Oxford, Cambridge, Peterborough / HSE Approved Floor Testing in London and Home Counties – Watford, Milton Keynes, St.Albans, Cambridge, Newbury, Reading, Andover, Heathrow / Pendulum Floor Tests in South England – Portsmouth, Brighton, Eastbourne, Southampton, Bournemouth, Salisbury, Isle of Man /  Floor Friction Tests in South West England – Swindon, Bristol, Bath, Plymouth, Exeter, Falmouth, Cheltenham, Gloucester, Taunton, Warwick / Cheap Floor Tests in South East England – Dover, Margate, Rochester, Folkestone, Hastings, Tunbridge Wells,

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Ramp Testing of Floors (Off Site Floor Testing)


Off Site Ramp Testing EquipmentDIN Standard Ramp Testing is an alternative to Pendulum Testing and generally categorised as an ‘off-site’ activity because of the size / complexity of the equipment.


In a Pendulum Test the equipment remains level and a industry standardised rubber slider passing across the floor imitates the action of heel slip and produces a result, known as the Pendulum Test Value. The different rubber slider useds can either imitate general footwear or bare feet and the results are consistent, accurate and repeatable.


The Pendulum Test can not imitate the exact reaction or determine the floor slip resistance between a specific type of floor in conjunction with a specific type of heel and sole material and specific contaminant, but the Ramp Test can.  For example, the oil refining industry may wish to specify non-slip shoe which is safe for use in a specific area when used in conjunction with diesel; the pendulum test could not do this, but the ramp test can and determine a specific CoF (Coefficient of Friction*).



*The PTV or ‘Pendulum Test Value’ equals CoF x 100; for example a CoF of 0.5 x 100 = a PTV of 50.


The UK Health and Safety Laboratories (HSL) describes and recommends the laboratory based (German) DIN Standard Ramp Test method of determining the Coefficient of Friction (CoF) as a “reliable way of determining reliable slip-resistance characteristics of flooring, footwear and associated contaminants”, but most importantly, determining slip resistance when these components are likely to be found in combination with each other


For the architect, flooring manufacturer and those specifying floor surfaces, the ramp test combined with an on site Pendulum Test will give you complete confidence the specified floors are the correct choice and will satisfy the criteria to meet HSE Guidelines on floor slip tests  watch the video of ramp testing


For the Slip injury Lawyer - The floor ramp test can be used to provide forensic information of the interaction of a shoe type (or bare feet) a contaminant and a particular floor surface.


The Ramp Testing R Ratings

Two sets of theoretical values were arrived at by the German Labs via DIN Testing (and as used by the UK HSE / HSL) for


(1) a person wearing footwear

(2) for bare feet


DIN is the equivalent to British Standards and is an accepted standard in the UK. DIN stands for 'Deutsches Institut für Normung' or German Institute of Standardisation. It is the standard by which floor designers and architects must specify to in some countries to conform with building regulations and to offset possible accident injury claims.

The Two Ramp Testing Standards apply:-

DIN 51130. Testing of floor coverings (Shod) – Determination of the anti-slip properties – Workrooms & fields of activities with slip danger, Walking method – Ramp test.


DIN 51097 Testing of floor coverings (Barefoot) – Determination of anti-slip properties - Wet-loaded barefoot areas, walking method - Ramp test.


How the ramp test was performed - shod feet - R Ratings

A ramp, laid in turn with different flooring material to be tested was raised in varying degrees until a person, wearing a specified shoe type shod with a rubber hardness of 96, which is the same hardness of slider used for a pendulum test for shod feet, slipped on the floor (See the image to the right of the shoes used).


The test was performed a number of times using dry floors, wet flooring and contaminated floor surfaces. The results were then averaged and an R rating and equivalent range of Pendulum Test Values (PTV) designated


How the ramp test was performed - bare feet - ABC Ratings

The test was repeated in exactly the same manner but in bare feet and to easily identify between the two tests above, the bare feet rating was categorised as the ‘ABC Ramp Rating’


NOTE WELL - The ratings relate to the potential to prevent slips on  horizontal floor; they do NOT inform a user what floor SLOPE they can be safe on without slipping  (which is a common misconception)



Through mathematical calculations, the test results were translated to the following values: -













     RAMP TEST DIN 51130 - FLOOR ‘R’ RATINGS FOR SHOD FEET












     RAMP TEST DIN 51097 - FLOOR ‘ABC’ RATINGS FOR BARE FEET



NOTE - The HSE recommend a MINIMUM Pendulum Test Value (PTV) of 36 should be achieved on a horizontal surface with a wet or contaminated floor, which can be proved in situ using a Pendulum Test or in advance with Floor Sample Tests.



What do the Floor Rating tables actually tell me?


They inform you that, to remain safe under UK laws on Floor Safety: –


For a shod environment - a floor / tile ‘R rating of a minimum of R11 is required and FloorSlip would suggest R12 is better and guaranteed to pass a Pendulum Test in a wet / contaminated environment and on many slopes up to approximately 7 degrees of slope (A typical wheelchair ramp is 3 to 4 degrees). Floor surfaces classified R 9 and 10 are NOT acceptable in slippery, wet floor or oily and greasy floor conditions in the UK if you want to remain safe and avoid prosecution


And for areas such as swimming pools, bathrooms, showers etc. where bare feet are prevalent then a ‘C’ Rating is recommended in all cases. It is also not uncommon to find slope in wet areas to assist in drainage


Floor Slopes require an increased PTV of approximately 2 per each degree of slope as the table here shows













FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS ON RAMP TESTING

Can I relate the Pendulum Test back to an R Rating?

The DIN Testing (and the same testing / standards used by the UK HSE / HSL) determined a range of values that relate to the R Ratings achieved on the Ramp Test (As the tables above shows. So for example, if you wanted to identify the typical R Ratings for a range of floor tiles then by conducting the Pendulum Test you will arrive at a figure for each flooring type, which will give an indicative R Rating.


Which is cheaper - The Ramp Test or The Pendulum Test?

The Pendulum Test is far cheaper - a typical ramp test on a single sample might cost £447 - 500 for a single sample whereas a floor sample tests start from around £150 - £170 and a nominal charge of £25 to £50 for each additional sample tested in the same testing session.


Why does the range of Pendulum Test Values (PTV) vary so much?

The Ramp Test uses specific floor types, shoe sole/heel type and contaminants but is dependent upon the weight of the person being tested, the size of the area of the feet and even the tread pattern etc. and these will vary. As a result it is impossible for specific Pendulum Test Values (PTV) to be arrived at every time. So instead a range of values is arrived at for given angles of the ramp test. We have deliberately not included the ramp test angles on this web page as in our experience we have found our clients and persons reading this information have confused the test angles of the ramp as the angle that a floor may be safely set to, which is vastly incorrect. Read the next section for information on floor test values on slopes


When is Ramp Testing used?  

Ramp Testing is typically used before a floor is laid; but in some cases after a floor is laid if it is practical to remove flooring material for a test because, as the image here shows (courtesy of the HSL) the equipment is not particularly portable. Typically a 1 metre square sample is required


How does Ramp Testing work?

The image shows a version of the Ramp Test being conducted by the HSL; conducted to operating procedure HSL PS SOP 12. The ramp test inclines a ‘ramp’ covered with the flooring of choice inclined 1 degree at a time until someone walking on the ramp slips (either shod or barefoot); the CoF (Coefficient of Friction) is then calculated mathematically using the tangent of the angle of the slip.


What is the advantage of the Ramp Test?

The advantage of the test is that a specific shoe sole / heel material / tread pattern can be used on the exact flooring used / or to be used and using water and contaminants expected to be found in the environment the floor / sole will be used in.


What is the disadvantage of the Ramp Test?

The test is very specific to floor type and shoes material / tread pattern etc and even the size / weight / gait of the person and the shoes size will effect results; but vary your floor types / shoes types etc outside of the test range and it will probably require more ramp testing to be conducted to gain specific results


Does the Pendulum Floor Test give similar results to the Ramp Test?

Yes, but only provides results of a generic nature using a rubber slider of rubber hardness 96 (Or 55 with bare feet*) which

imitates the ‘typical’ rubber hardness found in shoe sole and heel materials; (*Rubber Hardness 57 with BS 13036:4:2011).


What is the advantage of the Pendulum Test?

- It is used around the world

- In the UK it is the test equipment of choice for the UK Health and Safety Executive

- It is recognised in In UK courts in slip injury accident claim cases

- Probably 99% of areas using shod feet will see a variety of shoes from  stillettos to everyday shoes and trainers to work boots, the Pendulum Test mainly using a rubber hardness (IRHD) of 96 arrives at a specific minimum value that meets all these scenarios. Or if we change the slider rubber used to a softer rubber (IRHD 55) we can test the generic situation in a bare foot environment, for example a swimming pool.

- The test is also a lot cheaper than a ramp test making it affordable for most peoples pockets - from £150 for offsite floor sample tests to From £447 for an onsite Pendulum Test - see our page on floor test prices


What is the disadvantage of the Pendulum Test over the Ramp Test?

It is a generic test and can not form a relationship between a specific floor type and shoe type  


What floor types did the DIN Ramp Testing cover?

The table below depicts HSL (UK Health and safety Laboratories) derived results for Pendulum Tests versus Ramp Testing. Conducted on specific floor types using a shoe fitted with a smooth ‘96 rubber hardness’ sole (No tread) prepared with a P400 roughness grit abrasive paper prior to testing. Column 1 shows the surface roughness test readings found. Columns 2 and 3 are a comparison of the results between the findings for the Pendulum Test (Column 2) and the Ramp Test (Column 3).


It can be seen that there are some differences in the results. The ramp test is subjective in that it relies on a person walking on a sloping in exactly the same manner every time, so the test does not always produce expected / desired results. The pendulum test on the other hand is consistent - and tests formed by the UKSRG (UK Slip Resistance Group) using a number of operators acting independently using their own equipment showed a good consistency of results for all operators and the different suppliers of pendulum test equipment


The Pendulum Test Value of 36 is the minimum the HSE expect in a Dry, Wet or Contaminated environment


















See HSL Report HSL/2006/47 ‘Ramp Testing Natural and Man Made Stone Floors – Final Report’ - Pg 18 -20 for further information at  http://www.hse.gov.uk/research/hsl_pdf/2006/hsl0647.pdf



Notes For architects, flooring designers, floor manufacturers and suppliers and those specifying floors


Note 1 - Ramp Testing considered in harmony with surface roughness testing and pendulum testing should provide a complete understanding of the anti-slip behaviour of floor types.


Note 2 - When specifying a Ramp Test ‘R Rating’ for new floors, you should be aware floor wear will occur and consider specifying an R rating greater than just acceptable at new. The cost might be initially greater but the accident compensation resulting from a slip and fall injury and the need to add anti slip solutions at an earlier date is likely to be far more


Note 3 – The ramp test ‘R scale’ starts at R9 (the least Slip Resistant flooring type) it does not commence at R1 , which is a common misbelief!



 


Remember - Always use a minimum of R12 and ideally R13 rating for any slopes; even a 5 degree slope needs a minimum Pendulum Test Value (SRV) of 45 where a PTV  value of ‘2’ should be added for every 1 degree of slope


Always use a ‘C’ Rating in wet areas where bare feet are the norm

R Rating  Value

Shod Environments

PTV

(Pendulum Test Value)

R 9 (No Values below R 9)

11 - 18

R 10

18 - 34

R 11

34 - 51 *(See Note below)

R 12

51 - 70

R 13

70 +

ABC Rating Value

Bare Feet Environments

PTV

(Pendulum Test Value)

A

21 - 31

B

32 - 42

C

45 +

Values of Tangents and the relationship to Pendulum Test Values (PTV)

Slope Angle 

Specific Calculations

New Minimum PTV

Value Required

Exact

Nearest Whole Figure

1 degree

100 x Tangent of 1 degree (0.017455)  = 1.74

38

37.74

2 degrees

100 x Tangent of 2 degrees (0.034921) = 3.49

40

39.49

3 degrees

100 x Tangent of 3 degrees (0.052408) = 5.24

42

41.24

4 degrees

100 x Tangent of 4 degrees (0.069927) = 6.99

43

42.99

5 degrees

100 x Tangent of 5 degrees (0.087489) = 8.74

45

44.74