“Slip and fall” is a common phrase used in personal injury cases where a person slips, trips or falls on public or private property. These types of cases fall under a more general category known as “premises liability.” Property owners must keep their premises in a reasonably good condition to prevent such accidents. Regardless of all preventive measures, accidents happen.
Some common causes that could potentially contain an element of negligence
May accidents involving slip and falls are caused by trip hazards due to neglect or disrepair:
- Broken stair or missing handrails
- Ripped carpets, loose tiles or floorboards
- Cracked sidewalks
- Poorly lit areas
- Lack of warning signage
Conversely, many trip hazards are presented when a property is under repair, renovation or construction:
- Extension cords across walkways
- Equipment, tools or other construction-related items in traffic areas
- Construction debris, dust, liquid or other materials that make walking surfaces slippery
Aside from slip-and-fall hazards presented by humans, there are what insurance companies call “acts of God.” Mother nature herself can cause dangerous conditions for pedestrians, employees and customers. These types of freak accidents are not due to any negligence by property owners. However, negligence and liability come into play when unsafe conditions are not dealt with promptly. Ice-covered sidewalks and standing water, for example, must be remedied before accidents happen or property owners could be held liable.
According to the New York State Department of Health, “Slip and fall accidents are the leading cause of injury-related deaths, hospitalizations, and emergency room visits among adults 65 and older.” Regardless of age, slip-and-fall accidents can happen to anyone at any time. If you or someone you love has slipped and fallen on someone else’s property, it is highly recommended to seek legal counsel that has extensive experience with New York laws regarding slip-and-fall accidents.