Winter can be a charming time of the year, particularly during the holidays when the snow blankets the trees and roadways. However, the winter season is also the most dangerous time of year when it comes to slip-and-fall accidents. When snow and ice accumulate on driveways, walkways, outdoor stairways and sidewalks, there is a heightened risk for slip-and-fall accidents that could result in severe injuries and slip-and-fall lawsuits.
Are Slip-and-Fall Injuries Common?
Slip-and-fall accidents are a common cause of injury in the United States. In fact, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates that approximately 3 million people are treated in the emergency room each year for fall related injuries. Slip-and-fall accidents account for 15 percent of all work-related injuries and make up between 12 percent and 15 percent of all workers’ compensation expenses.
The CDC also estimates that 20 percent to 30 percent of people who take a fall will suffer moderate to severe injuries such as head injuries or hip fractures. Slip-and-fall accidents are the most common cause of traumatic brain injuries (TBI). Studies indicate that almost 80 percent of slip-and-fall accidents on snow and ice occur in parking lots or on sidewalks, with more than half of these falls occurring between 6 a.m. and 12 noon.
Can I get Compensation for my Slip-and-Fall Injuries?
Depending on the facts of your case, the owner of the property where the fall happened may be responsible for compensating you for any injuries you suffered as a result of the fall. Business owners are required to keep their property reasonably safe for the public. During the winter months, this means clearing ice and snow from walkways, stairs, ramps, parking lots, and any other area where the public may walk on the property. Failure to do this can cause a dangerous condition and lead to falls. If you are injured as a result of a dangerous condition at a store or other business, the owner may be held responsible for your injuries.
Under Rhode Island’s Residential Landlord and Tenant Act, a landlord or property owner has a legal obligation to keep common areas such as walkways, stairways, and parking lots reasonably free of snow and ice. If the landlord or owner fails to maintain the property, it may mean they will have to compensate you for your injuries. In the case of public property, such as a public sidewalk or walkway, the city, county or governmental agency responsible for the upkeep of the property may be held responsible if you fall and injure yourself because of dangerous conditions.
Contact an Experienced Providence Slip-and-Fall Lawyer
If you or someone you know has been injured in a Providence slip-and-fall accident, contact one of our experienced Providence slip-and-fall lawyers located at 390 Broadway, Providence RI. You may be entitled to compensation for your medical bills, lost income and pain and suffering, among other losses. No fees are received unless you win your case. For a free (no obligation) case evaluation, call us at 1-401-831-8600 or toll free at 1-800-992-6878. You may also fill out our contact form online.