Slip and fall accidents are the second leading cause of personal injuries in the United States and account for an estimated 16,000 deaths each year. Often these injuries and deaths are caused by a dangerous condition on someone else’s property. An injury from a fall that is caused by a hazardous condition in another person’s property may entitle the victim or the victim’s family to compensation.
Over 70% of falls occur due to dangerous conditions and hazards in our environment. Dangerous conditions that cause slip and fall accidents frequently result from poor design or improper maintenance. Other hazards are created by the presence of slippery surfaces and substances, such as areas with food spillage or water leakage.
Slip and fall accidents occur virtually everywhere – in a supermarket, shopping mall, school, office, or on a sidewalk.
Slip and fall accidents usually have two main types of causes. On way could be when your front foot slips forward, causing you to fall backward. In the alternative scenario, your rear foot slips backward, causing you to fall forward. Another type of slip and fall, usually referred to as a trip and fall, occurs when your foot comes into contact with an obstacle, such as an object or defect along your path.
Property owners must use reasonable care in the management and maintenance of their premises and avoid exposing others to an unreasonable risk of harm. Thus, property owners have a duty to reasonably inspect for any unsafe conditions and either to repair the defect or give adequate warning of conditions that could result in harm to others. In order to hold a property owner liable, the victim must prove that the property owner knew, or should have known, about the hazard that caused the slip and fall accident, and that he failed to remedy it or warn about it.
If you suffer a slip and fall or a trip and fall injury, seek immediate medical attention for your injuries immediately. Next, determine the hazard that caused your slip and fall and take photos – time is of the essence in preserving the evidence at the site of your fall and therefore, you must do what is reasonably necessary to take photos. If you have a camera with you (your cell phone will do), snap photos, or ask a companion or anyone at the scene to take one.
Then, if you suffer a slip and fall injury in any commercial establishment, such as a store, a supermarket, or a mall, you should report the slip and fall accident to management right there and then. Accident reports help establish that the slip and fall accident actually occurred, preventing a property owner from later claiming that the incident never took place.
Our attorneys are experienced in handling slip and fall cases, as well as trip and fall cases. For a free consultation on a slip and fall or trip and fall case, please contact us at 1-800-776-4529