Accidents that are attributed to slips, trips, and falls are more common than many Americans realize. According to the National Floor Safety Institute (NFSI), fall accidents are the leading cause of injuries that result in hospital emergency room visits, accounting for more than eight million emergency room visits each year in the United States, with slips and falls accounting for approximately one million, or 12 percent of those. Not only do falls often result in serious injuries, but they account for numerous fatalities each year as well. In 2013 alone, fall accidents accounted for approximately 29,500 deaths.
Quick Facts About Slip and Fall Accidents
The NFSI has compiled an abundance of information regarding slip and fall accidents that result in injury or death in the United States. According to their report:
- Issues with flooring and flooring materials are a contributing factor in approximately 2 million fall accidents each year.
- Fractures occur in an estimated 5% of fall accidents.
- Slip and fall accidents account for approximately 85% of workers compensation claims, and an alarming 15% of occupational deaths.
- More than 60% of nursing home residents fall annually.
- Slip and fall accidents are the leading cause of on the job injuries for workers between the ages of 15 and 24.
- Fall accidents are the leading cause of traumatic brain injuries.
Most Falls are Preventable
Unfortunately, slip and fall accidents can happen in almost any location. The good news is, most falls can be prevented. A few hazards that increase the risk of slip and fall accidents include:
- Loose rugs, wet floors or rippled carpeting
- Clutter in walkways and doorways
- Poor lighting conditions
- Poorly maintained sidewalks and stairways
- Safety code violations
Slip and fall accidents can result in serious, often disabling injuries and even death. In fact, victims often suffer from injuries so debilitating that they are required to miss work, receive ongoing medical treatment, and experience extensive pain and suffering. While not all slip and fall accidents warrant filing a personal injury claim or a workers compensation claim, many are due to the actions or negligence of others, and those parties should be held legally liable. In order to help determine if a filing a claim is warranted, victims and their families should consult with an attorney who is experienced with slip and fall cases in their community.