What Are the Most Common Types of Slip and Fall Injuries?
Premises liability, or “slip and fall” lawsuits, are one of the most common types of personal injury cases. Take a look at some statistics, and it’s easy to see why:
- A recent report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) says that an older adult falls once every second, making it the leading cause of injury in the United States for this population.
- Falls are one of the leading causes of emergency room visits, with eight million recorded ER visits each year.
- Slip and fall incidents are the leading cause employees list in their worker’s compensation claims.
- Slip and fall occurrences are the leading cause of on-the-job injury in workers aged 15-24.
As you can see, slip and fall cases affect the young and old alike. There are, however, some slip and fall injuries that are more common than others. These are some of the most common types of injuries our Atlanta slip and fall attorneys see at our firm:
- Slip and fall accidents due to lackluster maintenance. Cracks in sidewalks, broken stairs, and loose handrails can all lead to trip and fall or slip and fall injuries. Each person who owns property has an obligation to keep it safe for those who use it. If owners fail to reasonably maintain their property, and it leads to your injury, you may have grounds for a personal injury claim.
- Uneven flooring or wet floors. According to the National Floor Safety Institute, there are two million injuries due to flooring issues each year. In the eyes of the law, people are negligent when they should have known an unsafe condition existed or caused it to happen. For example, a store manager should be aware of a loose floorboard and take steps to fix it.
- Unguarded manholes and unsafe construction areas. Construction workers have an obligation to cordon off any work area that may be unsafe to the public. On the other hand, a construction worker’s employer must also take steps to make sure the work area is safe for employees. Both construction workers and pedestrians are injured each year as the result of unsafe construction sites.
- Poor lighting. Lighting also falls under the realm of premises liability since owners of public property must ensure patrons can see where they’re going. An exception to this rule is trespassing – you can’t, for example, sue a government for tripping and falling in a park at night if there are posted signs stating that the park closes at dusk.
- Safety code violations. For occupational injuries, one of the most common causes of falls is safety code violations. The Occupational Health and Safety Administration sets certain rules for employers and failing to adhere to these standards is negligence. If you’ve been injured as the result of a safety code violation, you may be eligible for compensation beyond a worker’s compensation claim.
Legal Considerations for Slip and Fall Injuries
Slip and fall injuries may be common, but successfully securing compensation for your injuries requires fulfillment of several conditions:
- The property’s owner knew or should have known a defective or unsafe condition existed.
- The owner failed to remedy the unsafe condition or take steps to prevent people from accessing it.
- You were injured as a result and were in a place that you had a legal right to be.
Here are a couple of examples:
- You may be eligible for compensation if you slipped and fell in a puddle of water at the grocery store, especially if the store knew the puddle was there (i.e. a store employee walked by it or a customer provided a warning).
- You wouldn’t be able to sue if you were trespassing on private property, tripped over a stick, and fell. You also wouldn’t be able to sue for tripping over a root on a nature trail since you can reasonably expect to see tree roots in a forest.
If you have questions about your slip and fall injury, discuss it with a qualified personal injury lawyer in Atlanta. He or she will be able to explain possible compensation and the merits of your case.