Grocery Store Case Highlights Slip-and-Fall Dangers
Slips and falls are not always “accidents.” Instead, they result from the careless or reckless actions of property owners. The incident may lead to a premises liability lawsuit.
What is an example of such a lawsuit? Here’s one:
A Nevada law firm recently reported that one of its clients slipped and fell on a puddle of water in a grocery store, seriously injuring her knee.
Relying on video surveillance footage and other evidence, the victim’s attorney claimed that the store’s owners and employees knew that a potentially dangerous condition existed and negligently did nothing to correct it. The case settled for $2.3 million.
The case highlights how slip and falls and injuries can occur, and how property owners can potentially be liable for the damages that result.
Slip and Falls Cause Serious Injuries
Slips and falls can result in serious and potentially debilitating injuries that require ongoing medical care and impacting the victim’s ability to work.
The National Floor Safety Institute estimates that medical costs for these injuries alone amount to nearly $13 million each year in the U.S.
If you suffer a slip and fall, you should get medical care immediately, regardless of your symptoms.
Even a seemingly minor “accident” can result in the following injuries:
- Muscle, tendon and ligament strains, sprains and tears
- Broken bones and multiple fractures, particularly in the hips, pelvis, ankles and wrists
- Back and neck injuries, including herniated disks and damaged vertebrae
- Head and brain injuries, including traumatic brain injury (TBI).
The National Safety Council (NSC) reports that slips and falls also are the third leading cause of death in the United States.
Common Causes of Slips and Falls
Slip and falls can occur at home, work or in public places such as grocery stores, retail establishments and office buildings. The NSC reports that common causes of slips and falls include:
- Wet and slippery floors (due to spills, recent mopping or condensation)
- Obstructed and cluttered aisles and walkways
- Unexpected steps or gaps in tile or carpeting
- Uneven stones or gaps in the concrete in sidewalks
- Poor lighting or a lack of handrails in areas such as stairways.
Failing to correct or warn customers about the above conditions could end up resulting in liability for the property owners and managers if injuries occur.
What Are Premises Liability Claims?
Premises liability claims involve proving negligence on the part of a property owner or manager. This negligence may take the form of allowing dangerous conditions to exist on the property or failing to warn visitors about hazards.
When a slip and fall occurs, you should notify a security guard or manager, make note of any witnesses at the scene and the circumstances under which the accident occurred. You should also consult with an experienced personal injury attorney as soon as possible.
Author: Jacob Maslow