Bill Waite was leaving a York, Pennsylvania shopping center when he tripped over an unmarked step, suffering serious injuries that left him blind. The unmarked step, which was located on an otherwise level walkway, may have resulted in the largest personal injury award in the county’s history. The property owner was found negligent due to the lack of signage alerting customers to the step.
According to the 80-year-old victim’s lawsuit, he had very little functional sight in his right eye before the incident. When he tripped over the step, Waite fell into a chair outside of a tattoo shop, striking his left eye. The accident left him effectively blind. Before the accident, Waite loved to spend time with his family and play golf. Now, Waite says, family gatherings are like “sitting in a dark closet listening to people on the outside.” A MA injury lawyer can help you proceed if you’ve been injured in a slip and fall accident.
Waite, who was 80 years old when the fall occurred in 2012, declined to comment, saying only that he “wished the incident had never happened and he hoped the money would make life easier for his wife.” The reality is, slip and fall accidents among the elderly are relatively common. In some instances, falls are a result of physical ailments, not property owner negligence. However, the age of the victim doesn’t excuse a property owner from taking responsibility for foreseeable conditions on their property. If a property owner knows about, or should have known about, a dangerous condition, he or she may be liable if someone is injured as a result. Due to the lack of marking on the step that Waite tripped over, the property owner was found negligent.
Slip and Fall Accident Statistics
Slip and fall accidents are one of the leading causes of personal injury lawsuits in the United States today. And they are one of the most dangerous types of accident. A Boston injury lawyer can help you determine if you have a successful injury claim following a slip and fall accident.
- More women experience work-related slip and fall accidents than their male counterparts.
- Falls are the top cause of emergency department visits, accounting for more than eight million ER visits annually.
- Fractures, which occur in about five percent of falls, are the most common serious injury suffered from slip and fall accidents.
- Slip and fall accidents are the primary cause of missed work due to work-related injuries.
- For workers age 55 and over, falls are the leading cause of occupational injury.
- According to the Consumer Product Safety Commission, more than two million annual slip and fall injuries are a direct result of floors and flooring materials.
- Falls account for about 50 percent of all accidental deaths that occur in the home.
- Falls are the second leading cause of fatal injury for people between the ages of 65 and 84, and the leading cause of fatal injury for people age 85 and over.