Falls are among the most common of all types of accidents and often result in injuries. Slip and fall accidents are also known simply as slips, trips or falls. If you were injured as the result of a slip and fall accident in Mobile, Alabama, you could be entitled to compensation. When the accident was caused by negligence on the part of another, that party may be held liable for costs of injuries that resulted. An attorney will help protect your rights and help you get any compensation that you deserve.
What Causes Slip and Fall Injuries in Mobile, Alabama?
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), falls result in more than 2.8 million injuries each year that require a hospital visit. More than 800,000 people are hospitalized for their injuries, and 27,000 people die each year from injuries caused by slip and fall accidents.
Slip and fall accidents may be caused by a number of factors. Outdoors, walkways, sidewalks or parking lots may have uneven pavement or may be in disrepair. Holes or cracks can cause someone to trip or fall. Dark or poorly lit parking lots and sidewalks can make it difficult to see curbs or other dangerous conditions.
Indoors, trips and falls can occur because of poorly maintained floors, carpets that are uneven, loose flooring or floors that are not adequately maintained, slippery conditions or clutter left in aisles. Boxes could be left in the middle of a hallway, or a file cabinet drawer could be inadvertently left open. In stores, aisles could be too small to navigate safely, or there could be racks sticking out, preventing safe passage.
Types of Injuries Caused by Slip and Falls
Many types of injuries can be caused by slip and fall accidents in Mobile, AL. Injuries range from minor bruises and scrapes to more serious injuries such as broken bones and head trauma. Older people are generally more at risk for severe injuries than younger people. Older individuals may sustain broken bones and other harm more easily when they fall because their bones are usually thinner and more brittle.
Contusions and lacerations
Bumps, bruises, and scrapes are often the result of falling, especially on concrete or other hard surfaces. Minor injuries usually heal within a couple of weeks with little treatment needed. Some injuries are more serious and require medical care. Open wounds must be properly cleaned, and in some instances, surgery or stitches are necessary to repair the cut. If a cut occurs on the face, the victim may need surgery later to prevent disfigurement.
Broken bones and fractures are among the most common types of injuries from falls. These can be extremely serious, particularly in cases where the bone shattered or was broken in more than one place. Surgery is typically indicated in these injuries, and sometimes additional surgical treatment is needed. Sometimes broken bones lead to complications, especially for older individuals. For instance, if a person breaks his hip in a fall, they could require surgery and a long hospital stay. The victim could be bedridden, which could contribute to other medical problems such as pneumonia or bedsores.
Sprains and strains
Sprains and strains can occur in slip and fall accidents. A twisted ankle, for example, might happen when you step into a pothole or try to catch yourself during a fall. Sprains and strains can be more of a nuisance than anything else, but they do usually require you to keep from using the sprained area until it is fully healed. This may mean that you have to stay out of work for a period of time while you are on the mend.
Back and neck injuries
When you fall, you could hit your spine on a hard surface or may twist your neck. In some cases, these injuries are serious and require medical attention. Ongoing care and treatment may include remaining in a stable position for a period of time. Some people will require a neck or back brace. If there are broken or damaged vertebrae, the patient might need surgery. Other times, the injury will resolve over time, but the patient may always have some pain and stiffness.
Head trauma is likely the most dangerous of slip and fall injuries in Mobile. An internal brain injury may happen even if the outside of the head does not show signs of an injury. For this reason, it is imperative that you seek immediate medical care if you hit your head during a fall. If you lost consciousness, you could have suffered a concussion or a more severe brain trauma.
Understanding Premises Liability
When you enter someone else’s property, you expect it to be safe. A property owner is required to ensure the safety of those who come onto their property. When an owner does not take the steps necessary to maintain safe conditions he could be considered negligent. Negligence occurs when someone knows or should have reasonably known that something they did or failed to do could cause an injury. When dangerous property conditions exist, the owner may be responsible for any injuries that occur as a result.
When the floor is wet or slippery, the owner has a responsibility to correct the problem and at the same time must warn people of the potential danger. For instance, they should place signs near the area to indicate danger and keep people away from the hazard. A poorly lit parking lot or sidewalk may create a dangerous situation for those walking through or passing by.
What to Do After Suffering a Slip and Fall Accident
If you suffered a serious injury because of a fall, you may need to take legal action. The first step is to determine that the accident was caused by negligence on the part of the property owner. The owner must have known about the condition but failed to take action to prevent injuries by correcting it within a short period of time. Not all slip and fall accidents in Mobile are due to someone’s negligence, although many could be the owner’s fault. Each case is different and should be evaluated by an attorney to determine whether legal action is needed.
Consult with an Alabama Personal Injury Attorney Today
If you are injured as a result of a slip and fall accident in Mobile, Alabama, we will help protect your rights and get you the compensation you deserve. Contact Charles McCorquodale Law to request a free consultation today.