Common Causes of Slip and Fall Accidents

Slip and fall accidents are prevalent. Statistics show that every year, about a million people visit emergency rooms due to slip and fall accidents. And while some of these slips and falls are minor and cause no concern, some are severe and may lead to skull fractures or in worst cases, death.

Operators and property owners are under the obligation to maintain their property in a reasonably safe condition. If a property owner breaches this obligation, and as a result of their action or inaction, someone gets hurt on their premises, their negligence could be grounds for a slip and fall claim. Slip and fall accidents are often predicated by poor visibility, lack of handrails, improper floor maintenance, and failure to promptly clean up spills.

Although slip and fall accidents happen due to a range of reasons, some causes tend to be more common than others. Here are examples of common slip and fall accidents.

Wet slippery floors/uneven surfaces

A National Floor Safety Institute research revealed that 55 of all slip and fall accidents occur due to dangerous walking surfaces. This could be due to anything from defective sidewalks, loose floorboards. Cluttered floors, torn carpeting, poorly constructed staircases, parking lot potholes or recently waxed or mopped floors. Such conditions make walking surfaces hazardous.

Poor lighting

People need light to see where they are going. However, when there is no light or the lighting is poor, then they become vulnerable to falls. A surface that’s not hazardous during the day may turn out to be dangerous at night. It is the duty of the property owner (manager) to ensure that the area is well lit. Walkways, garages, sidewalks, and stairwells can be especially hazardous.

Obstacles on aisles and walkways

Slip and fall accidents are also widespread in walkways or hallways that have obstacles than those that are clean and orderly. When there are cables and cords across walking areas or hallways, or when passageways and work areas are cluttered, or when there are boxes and other obstacles in areas where there’s heavy traffic, then there are higher chances of slip and fall. 

Defective handrails

People rely on handrails to climb up or down the stairs in the malls, hotels, complexes, shopping centers and even parking garages. When the handrail is faulty (or when there is no handrail), one becomes susceptible to slip and fall due to lack of balance or grip.

Liability for slip and fall accidents

Liability for injuries resulting from slip accidents is based on negligence. As stated earlier, premise owners have an obligation to use reasonable care to avoid injuries on their property. Premise owners owe anyone permitted to access the property the highest duty of care. So, if you were invited onto the property and happen to sustain an injury due to the negligence of the property owner, then you may be eligible to file for a slip-and-fall accidents. Working with a Los Angeles slip and fall attorney is a great way to get the most out of the process. The lawyer will help inform you of your legal options and the best way forward with the case.