By Osborne & Francis
October 25, 2023

Hazards that Commonly Cause Slip and Fall Accidents

Slip-and-fall accidents can result in serious and life-threatening injuries. In many cases, slip-and-fall accidents are often the result of obstacles, poor visibility, or deteriorating facilities. In effect, slip-and-fall accidents could be significantly reduced if common hazards were eliminated by negligent caretakers. 

If you have been injured in a slip and fall accident due to the negligence of an employer, business or property owner, or another party, you likely have questions about the process of filing a personal injury claim and what damages may qualify for compensation. At Osborne & Francis, we handle a variety of slip-and-fall accidents and negotiate for maximum compensation for our injured clients. You can reach us at (561) 678-0156 or contact our offices in Boca Raton or Orlando to schedule a free consultation with our team. 

Spills or Cluttered Floors Are a Tripping Hazard

In order to limit the risk of slip-and-fall accidents, retailers, property owners, and employers should ensure that their walkways are clean and clear of obstacles. For example, workers or patrons could easily slip on scattered papers, lose their footing by slipping on a wet floor, or bump into boxes and lose their balance. Surfaces that have become slick due to spilled liquids, wax, fallen papers, or other hazards prevent people from having the traction they need to catch themselves before a slip-and-fall accident occurs.

Loose Mats, Torn-up Carpet, and Uneven Flooring Are a Safety Risk

It’s not uncommon for flooring to deteriorate as it undergoes normal wear and tear. Accidents, such as dropping a heavy object or spilling a corrosive material, can further damage flooring and create uneven patches that can cause people to trip. Flooring that isn’t installed properly in the first place can also present a safety risk to employees or business patrons. However, it is the responsibility of the business owner, property owner, or employer to repair or replace damaged flooring in order to prevent slip-and-fall accident injuries.

Avoid Poorly Designed or Maintained Staircases and Uneven Steps

When you navigate a staircase or a few steps, your brain automatically anticipates that each step is the same height as the prior step. If the steps are uneven, even by less than an inch, that breaks the pattern that the brain has recognized, creating a tripping hazard. 

Slip-and-fall accidents on stairs can result in particularly severe injuries. If you slip on a staircase, your momentum can easily cause you to tumble down the stairs, compounding your injuries. Stair fall accidents commonly result in broken bones, head injuries, and back injuries. When staircases are rotted, torn up, uneven, or otherwise damaged, the risk of a serious slip-and-fall accident increases.

Missing or Broken Handrails Deprive Patrons of an Important Safety Feature

When traveling up or down an incline, having a handrail can help prevent slip-and-fall accidents. In many cases, they are intentionally placed in areas where a slip-and-fall accident is more likely, such as in an area with steps or one that tends to become slick when it rains. Think of handrails as a safety net. Even if you lose your balance, you have the handrail available to steady yourself. Handrails are also critical for people with mobility issues, or those carrying items and small children. 

Poor or Missing Lighting Jeopardizes Customer and Employee Safety

Conditions that create low visibility settings can increase the risk of slip-and-fall accidents. It is the responsibility of the property owner or employer to ensure that places like staircases are well-lit to avoid that scenario. For example, if a store owner failed to provide adequate lighting in a storage room and one of their employees tripped over some loose cables, they could potentially be found liable in a slip-and-fall accident lawsuit.

Potholes or Uneven Asphalt Present a Danger

Imagine trying to navigate around a pothole while on crutches, carrying a large box, paying attention to parking lot traffic, keeping up with small children, or riding in a wheelchair. You could easily injure yourself by landing on the hard surface of the pavement. Even if you are not distracted, juggling mobility issues, or hindered by carrying various items, your shoe could easily catch on the edge of an uneven patch of pavement, leading to a slip-and-fall accident. 

Slip-and-Fall Accidents Often Occur Where There is Missing Reflective Paint

Reflective paint is intended to alert people to a change in terrain, whether that be a step, ramp, or change in flooring. It still works well in areas with low lighting, allowing people to navigate these areas safely. When these places are not clearly marked, employees or patrons of a business may not recognize that they need to take extra care or adjust their path. 

Where Do Slip and Fall Accidents Commonly Occur?

Slip-and-fall accidents tend to occur in places where spills are common or the ground changes elevation. Common slip-and-fall accident sites include:

  • Construction sites
  • Grocery stores
  • Sidewalks
  • Parking lots
  • Restaurants and bars
  • Elevators and escalators
  • Stairs

In addition to their physical landscape, many of these are locations where people are prone to distraction. That makes keeping properties maintained and hazard-free all the more important to avoid slip-and-fall accidents.

Steps to Take if You’re Involved in a Slip and Fall Accident

First and foremost, you should seek medical attention, even if you think that your injuries are minor. Let a healthcare professional assess the severity of your injuries and provide documentation for your records. This protects you from an insurance company arguing that you irresponsibly allowed your injuries to worsen to collect a larger settlement.

If possible, you should document the scene and collect the contact information from any witnesses. This is especially critical for slip-and-fall accidents, as your personal injury lawyer will need evidence to demonstrate that another party was negligent. Without clear evidence of negligence, such as a spilled substance or missing handrail, it can be difficult to make a case. 

After you have secured medical attention and documented the scene, your next step should be hiring a qualified personal injury attorney who specializes in slip-and-fall accidents. Depending on the context of your slip and fall accident, you may need to file a personal injury lawsuit or a workers’ compensation claim. A personal injury lawyer can provide clarity on the distinctions between these two processes and offer an experienced perspective on what your slip-and-fall claim is worth.

Why Should I Hire Osborne & Francis to Represent Me?

The slip-and-fall accident lawyers of Osborne & Francis have a strong record of success litigating claims of all sizes. This is based on our years of experience, work ethic, and a results-driven mindset. Our team comes highly recommended by former clients, so you can feel confident that you are in good hands when it comes to negotiations for your Florida slip-and-fall accident claim.

Additionally, our familiarity with Florida law enables us to be prepared for scenarios where property owners may try to dodge liability, such as by invoking the open and obvious rule. We will work tirelessly to hold the negligent party accountable and secure a settlement that meets your needs.

Osborne and Francis are Here to Help You. Call Today to Schedule a Free Case Evaluation

After a slip-and-fall accident leaves you seriously injured, you may be trying to navigate mountains of medical bills, juggle a budget after losing wages, and deal with chronic pain. The personal injury lawyers of Osborne & Francis have the expertise and work ethic to negotiate a fair settlement that meets your needs.

Our team will support you through every step of the personal injury claims process, even if that means bringing your slip-and-fall accident lawsuit to court to secure compensation for your economic and non-economic damages.

The slip-and-fall accident lawyers of Osborne & Francis can help you hold the party responsible for your injuries accountable and obtain compensation for your bills. You can reach us at (561) 678-0156 or contact our offices in Boca Raton or Orlando. Our team welcomes the opportunity to offer you legal advice tailored to your specific circumstances to help you recover maximum compensation in a slip-and-fall accident lawsuit.

T. Andrews

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“Attorneys Greg Francis and Ryan Fletcher at Osborne & Francis Law Firm represented me in my personal injury case.The defendant drew a line in the sand and was adamant on a settlement amount I was almost willing to accept. After the dust settled and the smoke cleared, we settled for 3 times that amount!!! When they say ‘Real Tough Lawyers,’ they mean it.”

E. Holland

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Dennis and the other Osborne & Francis staff were amazing! Our case was HUGE and required tender loving care. Everyone on our case did their part by putting all the puzzle pieces together. We were given step by step updates and put at ease when our nerves got the best of us. For every inquiry we made we received a timely response...You are appreciated!

C. Smith

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“I am so thankful for EVERYONE, the entire staff at Osborne & Francis Law, for mentoring me through the mediation process with my hip replacement failures. I didn't realize how MUCH pressure they relieved me of by helping me deal with the reality of this traumatic time in my life, as it was OVER so quickly with a positive result. My family is grateful to have their mom HAPPY & FOCUSED on the future, rather than worrying over what happened in the past! FAST FORWARD, we are LIVING LIFE to the fullest once again!”

J. Davis

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“I couldn’t have asked for a better lawyer/ firm — everything was done professionally exactly how I wanted. Due to COVID my personal attorney Mr. Garcia was still able to make things work in a timely manner and he never made me feel like he wasn’t working. Overall I’m happy with how my case turned out and I would recommend him and this law firm to anyone. 100% satisfied.”

Alfred

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Quick and fair resolution to a unique case. On advice of my own attorney, I engaged Joseph Osborne of Osborne & Francis of Boca Raton, FL. Mr. Osborne had considerable experience in cases such as mine and the results showed that. Mr. Osborne and his staff were very helpful, kept me up to date, and listened to my input. The settlement was very fair as far as I am concerned.

Erica F.

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"Best personal injury attorney around, I could not be happier! I was seriously injured in a car accident and Osborne and Francis helped me through the entire process. I was blown away by how knowledgeable the staff and attorneys are at this incredible law firm. I would not hesitate to recommend this law firm to friends and family!"

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