Floor slip resistance tests in the USA have historically been written by the members of the ASTM F13 committee. Comprised mostly of expert “liars for hire” that exclusively work for slip and fall attorneys, and representatives of the flooring industry, these tests have been based on either no science, or very little shady science. The tests and the instruments the test methods were designed for were either created to get the answer lawyers will find useful (see the now-withdrawn ASTM F1677 for the Brungraber Mark II and Mark IIIB, and now-withdrawn ASTM F1679 for the English XL Variable Incidence Tribometer), or to help sell slippery floors in America (see now-withdrawn ASTM C1028).
The expert slip and fall court liars who created and published ASTM standards for both the Brungraber Mark II (which is the same instrument as Brungraber Mark IIIB for all intents and purposes) and English XL tribometers had their test methods withdrawn by the ASTM when they were found to have zero science behind them, but these tests were also rejected by OSHA. People still using these debunked instruments have to get very creative in order to get their data entered into courtrooms and depositions, and crafty they are are at creating bogus roundabout ways of saying their instruments are somehow valid despite not having a published test method in any country on earth. No other country plays with these silly tools which are only used in American courtrooms for creating fake data to help win lawsuits by unscrupulous expert slip and fall court liars.
All the test methods discussed above were eventually withdrawn when the ASTM in 2006 (a loooong time ago) figured out that the test methods were published with nefarious intentions to help sell slippery tile and/or win lawsuits at any cost. The ASTM even created a Committee of Standards (COS) made up of professionals from various other industries to help try to bring this ASTM F13 committee together to publish something based on actual science instead of the nonsense standards that they keep trying to get published which had to always be withdrawn for a lack of precision or other fatal flaws within the test methods. So far, all efforts to create an acceptable test method for reliably testing floors for slip resistance have failed in the USA. The rest of the world has watched in wonder…
The F13 members have now decided that since all their test methods are getting withdrawn because they lack precision or any good science behind them, they will now not publish ANY more test methods that mention a specific device. That way, they can keep using whichever withdrawn test method suits them on any given day to either help them sell slippery tile, or to help them win a lawsuit with nothing more than “junk science” and a withdrawn test method. (Spoiler alert: they always lie under oath and say the test methods they use were withdrawn for mentioning “patented devices”, but they know that’s not the primary reason their standards were withdrawn. Either that, or these “experts” were too stupid to realize BEFORE they published an ASTM standard that the ASTM doesn’t allow for standards to be published for patented devices. If they’re THAT dumb, they shouldn’t be publishing children’s book, never mind testifying in major slip and fall lawsuits!)
The American tile industry, since they no longer have ASTM C1028 (which was withdrawn in 2014 because it wasn’t based on any good science at all) to say all floors on earth aren’t slippery, have now begun using ANSI A326.3 and UL 410 to create misleading data for to help them sell slippery floors. Polished floors of all kinds are given satisfactory readings in wet conditions using these bogus test methods, which are helping keep personal injury attorneys and emergency room doctors very busy with innocent victims of these poor tests. These tests were created by people who work for people who sell tile and floor polishing services, and they were designed to help say slippery floors aren’t slippery. The entire American floor industry is behind these bogus, misleading tests now, so they’re feverishly promoting them as “science” when their true value is only in providing misleading data saying slippery floors aren’t slippery.
Enter science, international research, and integrity!
The newly revised ASTM E303-22 is a test method to determine the slip resistance of a flooring surface or the skid resistance of a road surface using the pendulum DCOF tester (sometimes called the British Pendulum Tester, pictured above). The official title of the test method is “ASTM E303-22 – Standard Test Method for Measuring Surface Frictional Properties Using the British Pendulum Tester”. The original test method ASTM E303-93 was first published in 1993, which is almost thirty years ago, and was updated in June of 2022. That means the British Pendulum was shown to have precision thirty years ago (when the test method was first published) , and the test method has just become more and more precise over the years with further updates to the test method and the calibration technique used around the world. The usefulness and precision of pendulum DCOF slip resistance and skid resistance testing has continued to be verified over and over again in numerous interlaboratory studies (of which we have often participated), as it has been in use in over 50 nations around the world for over 50 years now, which has led to safety criteria based on lab studies and 50 years of investigating real-world slip and fall accidents, and floors that never seem to have any slips, around the globe.
The ASTM E303 test method now more closely mirrors the pendulum slip resistance test methods used across Europe, in the United Kingdom, Australia, New Zealand, Singapore, and numerous other nations that have been using the pendulum slip resistance test device for decades. The pendulum DCOF tester is easily the world’s most widely-accepted and trusted tribometer for measuring the frictional properties of a surface to assess safety, both in the lab and in the field. E303 has also been used to assess the slip resistance of roads since at least 1993, and the pendulum tester was originally invented in the USA.
There have been numerous research studies done in many countries over the decades using the British Pendulum Slip Resistance Tester. Now the ASTM E303 slip resistance test results will more closely mirror results gotten by the corresponding pendulum test methods presently used in the European Union (EN 16165), the United Kingdom (BS EN 16165), Australia and New Zealand (AS 4663 and AS 4586), and other test methods from so many other nations. The pendulum test methods around the world are becoming more and more uniform with this latest published version of ASTM E303-22, which allows for even further international research studies to be conducted to validate the usefulness and accuracy of the pendulum DCOF slip resistance tester to assess the real-world slip resistance of floors and road surfaces.
The video below shows the British Pendulum tester in action using ASTM E303-22:
If you’re looking to get a ASTM E303-22 dynamic coefficient of friction (DCOF) slip resistance test done in our lab, click on ASTM E303 slip resistance testing. Contact us for a quote for doing testing at your location. We do coefficient of friction (COF) testing in our certified lab, and we test floors and roads all over North America and beyond. This is our specialty, and our knowledge in this field is unmatched in the Americas. Reports come stamped by a registered professional engineer.