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Slips and falls accidents – Who is responsible?

For anybody, but especially the elderly and the physically disabled, a simple slip or fall can result in horrendous pain, suffering and medical expenses. It is not uncommon for the elderly to fracture multiple bones after a slip or fall, and 818 workplace deaths were caused by slips and falls in 2014, according to the Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries, one of the leading causes of death for American workers.  Many times, a slip or a fall is simply a tragic accident. Perhaps the floor hadn’t dried completely after cleaning, or there was a shoe left in the middle of a hallway or you simply lost your balance. These things happen, and hopefully you are covered by insurance or other means to get the medical treatment you need.

In other cases, however, your slip or fall may have been directly caused by the negligence of an employer, a property owner or a business. In these cases, where a tragic fall or slip could have been foreseen and prevented, you have a legal right to seek damages from the perpetrating party and they are fully, legally responsible for your pain, suffering and medical expenses that result from the incident.  If you have suffered from a slip and fall accident whether at work or as the result of someone’s negligence give us a call and speak to an experienced Boston injury lawyer to find out what rights you have and what benefits you may immediately be entitled to. 

Some responsibilities for preventing falls and slips on flooring include the following. If these steps are not taken, those who failed to maintain these precautions may be liable for your fall.

  • If floors are being cleaned, waxed or polished, the property owner or business manager must provide signs warning of a slippery floor
  • If the floor is particularly hazardous, it should be blocked from public access by some type of noticeable barrier.
  • When waxing or polishing, do not use an excessive amount, spread the material unevenly or only polish/wax one section, as it could lead to an increased likelihood of a fall.
  • Do not apply any kind of floor treatments like wax or polish to an inclining part of the floor.
  • The employer or property owner must use non-skidding ingredients to prevent falls when and where they are required.
  • Any rugs, carpets or mats must be in good condition and not in a position to catch someone’s foot. There should be no rips, tears or bulges in carpets that could cause a fall.

Stairs are another common place for falls to happen. Property owners and business owners should always make sure there are no debris, loose sand or dirt on the stairs, that no steps are warped, sagging or otherwise compromised, and that there is a functioning handrail in place to guide people down and up the stairs.

This expectation of safety also extends to other areas of public life, including escalators and elevators. There should always be contingencies in place to prevent a catastrophic elevator or escalator event, such as emergency shut-off switches and barriers from clothing becoming trapped in between elevator doors or in between the tracks of an escalator.

When negligence leads to injuries, we go to work

As said before, many slips and falls are simple accidents. Many more, however, can be prevented. If you or somebody you love has been injured as the result of a slip or fall that was directly caused by the negligence of a business, employer or property owner, you are entitled to legal compensation for your medical bills, cost of living expenses and lost income from missed time at work.

At Altman & Altman LLP, our Massachusetts injury lawyers  have over 40 years of experience seeking settlements for people who are injured as the result of the lack of attention paid by others. Negligence is never an excuse when somebody gets hurt, and we will work endlessly to make sure you receive the financial compensation you need to continue living your life. Call us for a free consultation today at 617-492-3000 or toll-free at 800-481-6199. We are available 24/7.