More than 8 million Slip and Fall Accidents Occur in the U.S. Each Year
Slips, falls and trips are very common accidents in the United States. These accidents can happen anywhere and to anyone, however, the ones most prone to these are older adults and seniors – people aged at least 55 years old.
Records from the National Safety Council (NSC) show that more than 8 million slip and fall accidents occur in the U.S. each year. Some of the most common causes of these accidents include: wet, oily, or icy floors and surfaces; unreliable staircases; uneven, loose and broken floors, sidewalks, steps, and stairs; unsecured carpets and rugs; and, hidden or tangled extension wires, lack or missing guardrails, and lack of warning signs, among others..
When a person slips and falls, everyone else and sometimes even the victim would think that the one to blame for the accident is no other than himself/herself. The law, however, sees the whole situation differently and, instead of putting the blame on the one who slipped and fell, liability may rather be imputed on the owner of the property where the accident happened. This law is called premises liability.
Legally speaking, premises liability refers to a landowner’s answer-ability for certain types of injuries suffered by anyone on his/her property where an unsafe condition exists. Besides injuries due to slips, trips or falls, premises liability also includes in its scope any type of injury that may result due to falling objects, electrocution, open excavations, broken benches or chairs, and so forth.
Property owners, especially those who own or manage public places, such as malls, supermarkets, restaurants, food courts, playgrounds, swimming pools, hospitals, government offices, churches, etc., have the responsibility of keeping their premises free from risks of accident at all times, lest they face legal complaints or a premises liability lawsuit from someone who gets injured while inside their premise. For the legal right to seek compensation from the property owner, however, it is necessary for the victim to prove that the property owner was negligent in making sure that his/her property is kept from risks of accidents.