“Fall down” cases (also known as “slip and falls” and “trip and falls”) are the result of someone falling, slipping, or tripping because of a dangerous or hazardous condition on someone else’s property. Common fall down cases are because of water, snow and ice, abrupt changes in flooring, dim lighting, or hidden perils, like holes or weak places in the floor or ground.
These cases are considered premises liability claims bought by an injured person against a property owner or occupier. Landlords and renters may be responsible when someone falls down if they knew or should have known about the dangerous condition that caused the fall.
Types of Hazards
Most fall down cases occur when someone either slips or trips on something or mistakenly steps and falls.
Common causes of slips are:
- Spilled liquids
- Wet or oily surfaces
- Weather hazards
- Surfaces that do not have the same traction in all areas
- Loose, unanchored carpets, rugs, or mats
Trips are simply when someone’s foot strikes an object and causes that person to fall.
Common causes of trips are:
- Out-of-place object
- Uneven steps or thresholds
- Poor lighting
- Obstructed view
- Uncovered cables
- Wrinkled carpeting, rugs, or mats
Step and falls happen when someone’s foot does not land where you expect it to as you take a step forward.
Common cases of step and falls are:
- Unmarked steps
- Dips in pavement
- Evaluation changes without warnings
Who Is at Risk
Between 1997 and 2007, falls were the #1 cause of injury for people of all ages. Certain groups of people, though, are more susceptible to fall downs:
- Elderly: each year, 2.5 million older people are treated in emergency departments for fall injuries.[insert chart: http://www.cdc.gov/homeandrecreationalsafety/falls/adultfalls.html]
- Workers: fall downs regularly happen in all work places, but especially manufacturing and service industries. Fall downs are the most common cause of injury within the trucking industry, which includes loading and unloading cargo.
Tips for Staying Safe
To avoid slipping, tripping, or stepping and falling, there are some things you can do:
- Pay attention to what is in front of you
- Shorten your stride
- Walk with you feet pointed slightly outward
- Make wide turns
- Keep floors clear from clutter or obstructions
- Maintain floors
- Use proper lighting
- Store liquids to prevent spilling
1 out of 5 falls causes a serious injury, such as a broken bone or a head injury. Injuries from fall downs can make routine daily living very difficult. Falls are the most common cause of traumatic brain injuries for all age groups. Falls cause spinal cord injuries and broken hips, arms, shoulders, wrists, and arms. A person who falls may fear falling again and become less active and physically weaker—creating a greater risk of falling again.
What to Do After a Fall
The first thing you should do after a fall is seek medical attention if you are injured. If you do not need immediate medical attention, here are some things you should do at the location of the fall down:
- Inspect the area where you fell and try to determine what caused you to fall
- Take photos of the scene
- Look around and ask if anyone saw you fall, and if so, get their contact information
- If you fell at a business or at someone else’s property, tell the owner, manager, or supervisor and ask to create a report
- Keep the shoes you were wearing when you fell
How to Win
Mike Rafi knows the laws and statistics related to fall down cases, and will gather the evidence necessary for you to win. Mike will focus on:
- Determining the cause of your fall
- Locating and talking with witnesses
- Obtaining reports related to your fall and also reports of any prior incidents at the location
- Proving the extent of your injuries
If you have fallen and believe it may be because of someone else’s negligence, contact Mike so he can analyze your case and help you win.
He was beyond professional and hardworking.
We highly recommend Rafi Law Firm! Mike’s services led to the most equitable outcome.
Mr.Rafi and his team were a pleasure to work with!