The National Floor Safety Institute (NFSI) reports that slip and fall injuries account for about 8 million emergency visits each year. On the job, these accidents are the main reason employees miss work and lead to the most workers’ compensation claims. In the home, slip and fall injuries are responsible for half of all accidental fatalities.
To support these findings, the NFSI notes that flooring materials and surfaces play a role in slip and fall claims. Looking at all locations, you have a greater chance of slipping and falling in the following places.
When you arrive at your workplace or another place of business, you park in a lot or garage. These areas present a variety of factors that increase the chance of a slip and fall, including:
- Negligent maintenance, including potholes and uneven surfaces.
- Poor or insufficient lighting, which can obscure potential hazards.
- Speed bumps and wheel stops, which can pose a trip hazard.
- Winter weather, leading to icy and slippery patches.
Sidewalks and Walkways
Sidewalks and driveways experience many of the same issues parking lots do, particularly uneven pavement. When these areas are exposed to inclement weather, there is a chance you’ll have to navigate an ice or snow-covered surface, which could hide potholes or cracks.
No matter how careful you are, fall risks exist. Business owners, landlords and homeowners are all required to shovel and de-ice their properties to make them safe for visitors.
Slip and fall accidents greatly impact workplace staffing levels, yet hazards are not equal across all industries. Employees are more likely to experience a slip and fall injury in manufacturing, transportation, construction or warehouse environments, due to a combination of the following:
- A slick or uneven surface
- Not having appropriate personal protective equipment (PPE)
- Working at high heights
- Not being adequately trained on safety procedures
A swimming pool and the areas around it can present slip hazards. In a public setting, this may include a locker room with showers. Water and perspiration can drip all over these surfaces, creating a slick pathway.
Puddles are common, as many people assume someone else will clean up the area, but this assumption can increase fall risks.
Some hotels and resort properties have water-based attractions and slides, which raise the same concerns as swimming pools.
Bars and Restaurants
Slips and falls in bars and restaurants occur for several reasons, including:
- Spilled food and drinks that aren’t cleaned up in a timely manner or clearly marked
- The restaurant has poor lighting that can obscure the visibility of a spill
- Uneven flooring, torn carpet or electrical cords in walking areas
These factors can lead to a patron or staff member experiencing a serious injury.
Grocery Stores and Retailers
Large retailers, including department and grocery stores, have a higher likelihood of unmarked trip hazards. Clothing that has fallen off the rack or a pallet of boxes partially obstructing an aisle can lead to an injury.
For grocery stores in particular, freezers can leak, causing liquid to pool on the floor. Unless a barrier is placed in its path or the mess is promptly mopped up, there’s a risk a someone could miss it and fall.
Staircases and escalators pose fall, slip, and trip hazards due to poor maintenance, an absence of handrails, poor design or weather conditions for outdoor settings. These risks exist whether you’re walking up porch steps, climbing from one floor to the next in a commercial building or your clothing gets stuck in an escalator.
Did you experience a slip and fall accident on someone else’s property? Work with our team to hold the negligent party responsible. To learn more, contact Trantolo & Trantolo today.