Everyone trips and falls at some point. It happens. And though every cartoon has taught us that tripping and falling is funny, these types of accidents can often prove to be very serious, potentially causing severe injuries. From small bruises and bumps to severe brain trauma and spinal cord injuries, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention ranks falls as the leading cause of accidental death and injury among seniors.
Often, a slip-and-fall accident may be nothing more than an accident. In some cases, however, the cause is due to negligence. Under Florida law, property owners have an obligation to keep their premises safe from preventable harm and are required to repair or – at the absolute least – warn of known dangers or dangers they should have known about through routine maintenance and observation.
Common places for slip-and-fall accidents include …
Homes: Slip-and-fall accidents occur most commonly in doorways, on ladders and stairs, and other areas with uneven surfaces like overturned edges on rugs.
Construction sites: Many hazards can be present at construction sites. While some may be labeled clearly with warning signs, others may not which can affect contractors, passersby and neighbors.
Walkways: Sidewalks, paths and driveways can prove hazardous due to cracked or uneven surfaces.
Parking lots and parking garages: Parking lots and garages have potential hazards such as improperly placed wheel stops, cracked pavement, and lack of lighting.
Public areas: Swimming pools, gyms, parks, restrooms and other public locations can prove dangerous when an entity fails to maintain a safe environment.
Stores: Accidents in supermarkets, shopping centers or department stores can be due to any number of hazardous conditions such as spills and uneven pavement.
Stairs and escalators: Stairways with loose – or no – handrails are dangerous as its users may put faith in a safety feature that is unreliable. Warped or decaying stair treads also pose hazards that could lead to falls.
Hotels or resorts: Hotels and resorts can present a number of potentially hazardous conditions such as loose carpeting or wet floors.
Restaurants, bars and clubs: Spilled food, drinks and scattered debris increase the risk of injury.
Offices or workplaces: Slippery floors and debris left lying on the floor are just some of the potential hazards often responsible for workplace injuries.
Most slip-and-fall accidents can be avoided with proper training and precaution. Compared to lifelong injuries, damages and medical costs associated with a slip-and-fall accident, the cost of safety training, safe footwear, and regular maintenance is nominal.
Below are some tips on how to avoid slip-and-fall accidents:
- Wear safe shoes
- Avoid clutter that can become a tripping hazard
- Have proper lighting
- Clean and dry up wet or slippery surfaces
- Remove loose cords, such as extension cords from walkways
- Use nonskid floor mats
- Repair damaged or uneven flooring, stairs, and steps
Slip-and-fall accidents can change your life forever, leaving you overwhelmed with medical bills, missed time at work, physical pain, and other frustrations. If you or someone you know has been injured due to a slip-and-fall accident, you may be entitled to financial compensation for your damages. The time allowed to file a claim is limited, so contact attorney John Castro at Anton Castro Law to protect your rights before it is too late. Mr. Castro has several years of experience handling personal injury claims such as slip and falls, and is dedicated to ‘Representing Your Best Interests.’