Slips, trips and fall accidents are an extremely common type of accident. They can occur almost anywhere from shopping centres, supermarkets, service stations, corner shops, hotels, restaurants, schools, gyms, pubs, hospitals. Also in any area accessible to the public such as roads, footpaths, parks and playgrounds and on private property or within the workplace.
A slip, trip or fall accident can be a very serious matter resulting in serious injuries and great financial loss. At Anthony Joyce & Co. our team of personal injury solicitors are on hand to help and offer advice on exactly these situations. We have a vast experience in dealing with slip, trip or fall events which will help guide you through the process and ensure that you get the best possible outcome in relation to your case.
Issues with Liability
Although slip, trip and fall accidents are common they can be far from straightforward.
Liability can often be disputed and issues can arise in relation to the level of care exercised by the proposed defendant in looking to reduce the risk of accident.
In these situations it may be advisable at an early stage to engage the services of an engineer to examine the accident scene.
This can help ascertain whether the accident could have reasonably been avoided and if not which party is at fault and to what degree. It may also be necessary to acquire and preserve details of the accident scene or relevant CCTV footage. For this reason it is very important to, as soon as possible seek out specialist solicitors in dealing with slip, trip and fall accidents.
Contact our team for their expert legal advice as soon as possible.
Causes of Slip Trip or Fall Accidents
A few of the most common situations that can cause slips, trips or falls include:
- Uneven surfaces with no warning signs
- Recently waxed floors
- Recently mopped floors
- Spilt liquid which has not been cleaned up
- Loose floorboards or those with protruding parts
- Rugs or mats not sufficiently anchored
- Loose fittings or materials on a stairs
- Potholes on pavements, roads or parking areas
- Grease or oil on pavements, roads or parking areas
- Ice that has not been adequately cleared or salted
- A glare created by bright flight reflecting from a shiny surface.
- Inadequate lighting which makes it difficult to see clearly.
- Wires or cords running across a walkway.
- Debris or rubbish on the floor.
- Surface transitions which are not clearly marked eg carpet to wood
- Untidy work spaces with open drawers or cabinets
Stairs and ladders including:
- Using other furniture instead of a ladder.
- Failing to secure a ladder or have someone suitable hold it.
- Obscured vision when scaling stairs.
- No handrail present on a stairs or not using it.
- Stairs without adequate warning signs or stair nosings.
Occupations more susceptible to slip, trip or fall accidents:
- Chefs and industrial kitchen workers.
- Construction industry workers.
- Medical and hospital workers.
- Factory staff.
- Manual laborers.
- Cleaners and cleaning staff.
What to do following a slip, trip or fall accident
If you are unfortunate enough to have had an accident in a place open to the public, the workplace or on private property there are certain steps that you should take.
Report the accident to the property owner or if not present, the manager or other relevant person in charge at the premises. Ensure that the date, time and circumstances of the accident are fully recorded.
If you have been injured seek medical assistance and if necessary ask for the emergency services to be called to the scene.
If the injury is less serious attend your G.P. or the local hospital for a medical assessment and treatment.
Take details of any witnesses present and note the prevailing conditions when the accident occurred. If possible take photos of the accident scene and situation.
We would recommend seeking professional legal advice at this stage to ascertain if any other avenues should be pursued such as an engineers report or CCTV.
Public liability insurance
In the majority of cases, occupiers of property have public liability insurance the purpose of which is to cover accident and injury claims.
As a result, in most cases, the property owner or occupier’s insurer will deal with any personal injury claim arising from an accident on their property. It is also worth noting that it is not necessarily the owner or occupier of a property that is solely responsible for the incident.
Slip, trip and fall accidents often result from a danger created by a third party, such as a subcontractor or from another party carrying out work of some description on a premises.
In circumstances such as these it may be necessary to name both the owner/occupier of the premises and the third party as defendants in any subsequent proceedings.
This may result in more than one Insurer having an interest. These are all areas which will be routinely covered by a specialist team of solicitors dealing in slip, trip or fall accidents.
For advice in this area please call our team of solicitors at Anthony Joyce & Co.