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Slip and trip hazards in businesses

On Behalf of | Jun 18, 2024 | Slip-and-Fall Accidents

Going into an establishment to do business comes with the assumption that doing so is safe. Most people believe that businesses will alert them if there are hazards in the building, such as slippery spots from spills or obstacles in the walkways because they can be hazardous to patrons.

Obstacles and wet spots can lead to falls, which can cause serious injuries. Understanding the common causes and injuries that can occur when slipping and tripping are concerns on business premises are important for companies and consumers alike. Additionally, understanding what to do if a patron falls and suffers an injury at a business is important as well.

Common causes of falls

There are several common causes of people falling in businesses. Wet floors are a primary cause. This can be due to people tracking in moisture from their shoes or from something being spilled. Even mopping the floors can be hazardous if the area isn’t properly marked with a wet floor sign.

Uneven surfaces, such as poorly maintained floors or rugs that aren’t flat, can lead to a fall. This type of hazard is possible in the parking lot as well as the building. Poor lighting can obscure potential hazards, making it difficult for individuals to see obstacles as they’re walking around. Items left in walkways, such as merchandise, boxes or equipment, create tripping hazards.

Injuries that can occur due to falls

Common injuries caused by falls include sprains, broken bones and head injuries. Sprains often occur when the body twists during a fall, leading to ligament damage. Fractures, particularly of the wrist, hip or ankle, are also common, especially among older adults. Head injuries, ranging from concussions to traumatic brain injuries, are particularly serious and require immediate medical attention.

Steps to take after a fall

Anyone who’s been injured in a fall at a business should report it to the company immediately and seek medical care. Even if it doesn’t seem like the injuries are significant, it’s best to have a medical evaluation and have any issue clearly documented.

Some people who are injured at a business opt to seek compensation for the financial damages associated with their injuries. This aim is usually accomplished through a premises liability claim that must be filed within three years of the fall. These cases can be complex, so it’s best for victims to seek assistance before moving forward.