You may have been at work or visiting a friend’s house, or out on a trip to the grocery store. The truth of the matter is that a slip and fall can occur anywhere. While children and older people are particularly susceptible to injuries, anyone can be seriously injured in a slip and fall accident. Injuries resulting from slip and falls are far too common. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has estimated that 15% of all accidental deaths in the U.S. are caused by slip and fall accidents. This makes slip and falls only second to car accidents as a leading cause of accidental deaths in the country. A person or business responsible for managing property has a duty to those visiting the property to maintain safe conditions. A violation of this duty exposes them to legal liability for any resulting injuries caused by dangers on the property.
Common Causes of Slip and Falls
Slip and falls happen at personal residences and places of business. They happen inside and outside in all kinds of weather. Hazardous conditions on a property expose people to unnecessary danger. The most common causes of slip and fall accidents include:
- Loose flooring (rugs, mats, and floorboards)
- Sidewalks in disrepair
- Potholes in parking lots
- Uneven surfaces
- Ripped carpeting
- Cluttered floors, such as those with trash or other debris
- Recently mopped or waxed flooring
- Spilled liquids
- Poor lighting
- Cords running across a walkway
Also, weather conditions contribute to many slip and falls. While a property owner may not be able to control the weather, he or she should still be diligent in remedying dangerous conditions produced by inclement weather. For instance, in icy winter conditions, streets should be plowed. Sidewalks should be shoveled. Steps and walkways should be salted. Failure to address weather-related hazards on a property opens a property owner up to legal liability for any injuries the hazard may cause.
Ladder and stair related slip and fall incidences are also common. Poorly constructed staircases can be particularly dangerous and lead to severe injuries. A stair related slip and fall may be caused by something like a lack of handrail. Ladder injuries are often caused by a failure to secure the ladder or have someone hold it to stabilize it while in use.
Another common cause of slip and falls that is not talked about as often is improper training. The workplace is the frequent site of slip and falls. Some workers, such as those in manufacturing or construction, may be particularly susceptible to slip and fall incidences, especially if they have not received the training necessary to be aware of hazardous conditions on the job site and how to safely navigate the hazards. Manufacturing and construction workers often must spend a significant amount of time walking on slick surfaces or navigating uneven terrain or narrow pathways. Employers must train workers to make sure they are not only aware of these potential hazards, but they know how to properly maneuver the work conditions.
Trusted Legal Representation for Slip and Fall Injury Victims
The potential injuries caused by a slip and fall may include sprains, strains, broken bones, and head injuries, among other things. These types of injuries are serious and can have substantial health implications for the victim. If you have been injured by a hazardous property condition, you may have the right to bring a slip and fall claim seeking compensation for your injuries and losses. Contact the dedicated slip and fall attorneys at Cooper, Schall & Levy today.