Slip-and-falls occur all year round, but in Massachusetts, harsh winters can be a particularly dangerous time of year. Snow and ice are a common cause of falls, but not the only causes.
Both property owners and visitors to properties can take precautions to protect themselves from liability and injury. Serious injuries that are common from slip-and-fall accidents include neck trauma, head injuries, herniated spinal discs causing back pain and limitations, and hip fractures. Many deaths also result from falls.
These injuries cause significant medical treatment and resulting bills, as well as lost wages due to a temporary or permanent inability to work. In addition, the loss of quality of life due to pain and limitation is a non-economic form of damage that is deserving of appropriate compensation. As noted by WebMD, often when people slip and fall, whether outside or inside, a sense of embarrassment causes them to prioritize feigning wellness rather than checking for damaged body parts that are so prevalent.
Causes of slip-and-falls that property owner can prevent
There are foreseeable causes of falls both within homes and in commercial spaces that are preventable, including:
- Rugs and carpets that are not well-secured
- Uneven steps
- Steps without hand rails
- Icy roadways, driveways and sidewalks
The owners of properties can alleviate these risks. If they do not take care of these risks, they may find themselves liable if another person suffers injuries due to slipping or tripping.
Ways people can prevent themselves from slipping and falling
There are also risk reducers that a would-be fall victim can utilize. They include the following:
- Keep current on eye exams and current eye glass prescriptions
- Declutter hallways and foyers
- Use thin rubber-soled shoes instead of thick-soled shoes
- Increase lighting to correlate with earlier darkening in fall and winter
- Stay active to improve agility and flexibility
For those people who take medications, they should review the side effects of their medications, such as dizziness, and take care accordingly.