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Attention Forensic Engineers:
You are invited to join the VOSI "Forensic Engineering"  committee in order to utilize the VOSI standards and to avoid the pitfalls of "special interest" standards which conflict with the health and safety needs of people.

Our initial project is to have "Slip and Fall" experts stop using the conflicting ASTM & ANSI Slip Resistance test methods. The VOSI Slip Resistance test methods correlate with "Slip and Fall" accident rate and are scientifically sound.

Model 80 Floor & Footwear Friction Tester

The only VOSI approved floor and friction tester currently available is the Technical Products Co. Model 80 Floor & Footwear Friction Tester. This tester meets all of the scientific requirements for testing floors and footwear in accordance with VOSI V41.21 and V41.22 respectively. This is the only tester that standardizes the leather and rubber footwear sensor pads.

Click here to view the
"Evaluation of VOSI & ASTM Task Group Friction Test Sensors"

This research report contains statements by Donald Marlowe, Chairman, ASTM Board of Directors and Chairman, "ASTM Board of Directors Slip Resistance Task Group". (Ref. 2) which specify Neolite (ASTM C 1028) for both dry and wet testing of walkways. This report explains why VOSI rejected Neolite and specified Monarch EVA for dry and wet testing of all walking surfaces.

Use of private sector standards, by all levels of government, is required by the National Technology Transfer & Advancement Act of 1995 (NTTAA). The chairmen of both ASTM, Donald Marlowe and VOSI Donald Meserlian, P.E., recommend that government agencies enforce the NTTAA, and use only PERFORMANCE BASED STANDARDS. All VOSI slip resistance standards are performance based. The only ASTM performance based slip resistance standard is D 2047 on polishes. None of the ASTM F13 committee's standards, on the safety & traction of footwear are performance based.

Mr. Marlowe can easily solve the problem of the many conflicting MARKET BASED ASTM slip resistance test methods by referencing the SOCIETY BASED VOSI standards VOSI V41.23X for all walkway surfaces and V41.23Y for all footwear materials and shoes, in all of the ASTM test methods.

This will finally allow the manufacturers of walkway and footwear materials to test the slip resistance of their products in accordance with both the ASTM and VOSI test methods and to decide for themselves which method to use based on the correlation of test results with actual slip and fall accident rate.

None of the ASTM slip resistance test methods standardize the sensor therefore these methods are scientifically unsound and should not be accepted in court cases.

Click here to view the "Traction Index" Report.

In order to overcome the possibility of operator error, all forensic engineers must be certified before using the Model 80 tester.

Click here to view the Model 80 tester.

VOSI is recognized by the National Institute of Standards & Technology (NIST) based on our being listed in NIST Special Publication 831 99ED "Directory of Professional/Trade Organization Laboratory Accreditation/Designation Programs" (pg. 83). 

Click here to see VOSI listing.

30 members of the VOSI Forensic Engineers Committee own the Model 80 tester. All owners should make sure they have the two test surfaces and they are certified. Those who do not have a current tester should contact dcmeserlian@voicesofsafety.com  to determine their needs to become certified.

"Technical Issues Review Board (TIRB)"

Background: All governments are responsible for the health and safety of their citizens. The U.S. government passed the National Technology Transfer Act in order to require government agencies to use private sector standards whenever it is within their scope. 

VOSI was formed in order to eliminate the many conflicting ASTM and ANSI/ASTM slip resistance test methods by developing scientifically based slip resistance standards that correlate with slip & fall accident rate. 

The National Institute of Standards & Technology (NIST) is responsible for insuring that government agencies utilize private sector standards. 

NIST states that "ANSI is the appropriate organization for addressing the issue of conflicting standards that affect the public's health and safety". 

ANSI states that the Board of Standards Review (BSR) is only "procedural" and they will not rule on whether one technical proposal is better than another" and "Sometimes seemingly conflicting standards are approved as American National Standards". 

Government agencies cannot utilize conflicting standards without knowing which standard is technically correct and will yield the maximum benefit to the public.

VOSI has established the "Technical Issue Review Board" (TIRB) in order to determine the best standard for use by any government and industry. 

The VOSI "Slip & Fall Standards" section contains a "WARNING" that states:

"VOSI Task Group V41.20.1 (Our first TIRB) has determined that the Brungraber Mark II (ANSI/ASTM F1677) and English XL (ANSI/ASTM F1679) are both dynamic coefficient of friction (DCOF) testers and should therefore not be used in the United States." and "Only the static coefficient of friction (SCOF) is recognized in the U.S. judicial system as the criteria for determining whether flooring or footwear is slip resistant." BSR A1264.2 specifies both ASTM F1677 and F1679. The VOSI TIRB has determined that both testers are unacceptable to the U.S. judicial system. 

Since VOSI is recognized by NIST as one of the 210 private sector SDO's, the VOSI TIRB decision should be accepted by the ANSI BSR and BSR A1264.2 should not be approved by ANSI.

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Contact: webmaster@voicesofsafety.com
Created: 2001-01-20 Last Updated: 2007-12-04