Slip and fall accidents are some of the most common ways people are injured. While a minor slip and fall may only result in a couple of bruises, many people suffer a serious injury after a simple slip and fall. Falls are the number one cause of traumatic brain injuries, which lead to thousands of deaths every year. In many cases, slip and fall injuries are caused by a negligent property owner who could have prevented the dangerous accident.
What is Considered a Slip and Fall?
Slip and falls can occur anywhere. They can happen in our own homes, on the sidewalks in our neighborhood, at the grocery store, while at school, in the workplace, or while riding the Metro. A simple trip or slip can cause you to fall to the ground, landing hard on the cement or another surface, resulting in a serious injury.
After a fall injury, bystanders may come by to help the injured individual get up. However, if the fall resulted in a serious injury, the victim may not be able to get back up and an ambulance may be required. A store manager or property owner may show up to talk to the fall victim. They may be genuinely concerned about the well-being of the person who fell. However, they may also be concerned about their liability for the fall. In some cases, the property owner may actively try and blame the person who fell for their own injuries.
Dangerous Property Conditions
Many slip and fall accidents are caused by dangerous property conditions that contribute to the injury. The property owner may try and label the person who fell as clumsy or criticize them for not looking where they were going. However, this may just be a way to try and avoid liability.
Many property owners are aware of dangerous conditions on their property. Instead of fixing the danger, they ignore the obvious hazard or put off repairing the danger. Many of these dangers are easily repaired, which could prevent future accidents. These include:
- Uneven pavement
- Broken sidewalks
- Unsalted walkways
- Icy sidewalks
- Ripped carpeting
- Loose floorboards
- Wet floors
- Food spills
Common Injuries in Slip and Fall Accidents
Slip and fall accidents can range from minor to fatal. Injuries may depend on a number of factors, including age of the victim, type of surface, fall direction, and how they land. Head injuries are usually the most serious type of slip and fall injury. Falls are the leading cause of traumatic brain injuries which can cause minor concussions or lead to severe brain trauma. Severe traumatic brain injury can lead to a coma or death.
Falls landing on the back, spine, or causing neck trauma can also be serious. These can lead to spinal cord injuries, broken bones, and even paralysis. Minor slip and fall injuries may cause cuts, abrasions, as well as wrist, hand, knee, hip, ankle, or shoulder injuries. Mild slip and fall injuries may not require medical attention; however, if the victim is not sure if they have suffered a serious injury, they should seek medical advice.
Young children and the elderly may be more likely to suffer a serious injury after a slip and fall accident. Head trauma for a young child may have a serious impact because their brains are still developing. The elderly can also suffer serious slip and fall injuries, including head wounds, back injuries, broken hips, and other serious trauma.
Slip and Fall Injury Lawsuits
When a property owner or manager does not take measures to keep their property safe, they may be liable for injuries that occur on their property. If a spill occurs in a grocery store, the store should clean up the hazard as soon as possible and warn customers of the slippery surface. If an apartment building has a broken step, the property owner may be responsible for making sure the step is repaired before anyone is injured.
When slip and fall injuries occur on government property, the injured party may be able to seek compensation from the government. Claims against the government are handled differently than claims against a private party. There is a notice requirement that requires the injured party to notify the government within 6 months of the injury or their claim may be denied. Talk to your attorney after an accident to make sure your claim is filed in time so you can recover damages for your injury.
DC Slip and Fall Injury Lawyers
If you were injured after slipping and falling, you may have a claim against the negligent property owner. The law firm of Gilman & Bedigian can help you and your family file a personal injury claim to recover damages for your injury. Our attorneys have years of experience dealing with slip and fall injury cases throughout the D.C. Metro area. We will fight for your rights to make sure you get the compensation you deserve. Contact us today for a free consultation.