Posted on Saturday, January 15th, 2022 at 7:12 pm
Slip and fall accidents can lead to emergency room visits. In fact, they are the second leading cause of unintentional death worldwide. Recovery often requires extensive medical care and physical rehabilitation.
Slip and fall accidents are particularly difficult for older adults who may break a hip during the fall. The death rate in the first year after breaking a hip rises to 21%. According to the National Council on Aging, 25% of people over 65 will fall each year, and the financial toll of these injuries will rise to $101 billion by 2030. Falls are the leading cause of death after an injury and of trauma-related hospitalization in older adults.
After a slip and fall accident, you may experience broken bones, traumatic brain injury, sprained ankles or wrists, back and spinal cord injuries, or shoulder and neck injury. In other words, there is good reason to prevent a slip and fall accident for yourself and your loved ones. Here are five important steps you can take to prevent a slip and fall accident in your home or in public.
Take Care to Keep the Floor Clear of Debris
Many of the common situations that can cause a slip and fall accident are related to an uneven floor. For example, an uneven surface, loose flooring, wet or greasy floors, electrical cords, and uneven steps can all increase the risk of falling.
In your own home, it is excellent practice to keep the floors swept and clear of debris. Eliminate slippery surfaces and pick up loose rugs that are a hazard for tripping.
Outside your home, talk with management at your company to ensure they act responsibly about the environment. Obstacles should be removed from doors and aisles so there is no clutter where people can trip.
Light the Area Well
Lighting is essential to identify hazards that may be present on the floor. Additionally, proper lighting can help while going up and down stairs or crossing over thresholds within the house. Keep the areas well-lit and be sure to replace any bulbs that are burned out and not working.
In the workplace, lighting is also essential as it can help reduce the risk of accidents. Be sure the area around light switches is clear and accessible so you have easy access when you enter a dark room.
Be Prepared for Inclement Weather
Take care to be prepared for inclement weather. In your home or the workplace, snow, rain, and ice produce hazardous conditions. If you’re unable to shovel the snow or put down salt for icy conditions, consider hiring a service or a high school student from your neighborhood.
It is cheaper to pay $30 to have your driveway shoveled than it is to be hospitalized and go through months of rehabilitation. Every business should also have a safety plan to deal with ice, snow, and rain to prevent accidents for their staff and customers.
Remember that the best offense is a good defense. Work to improve your balance by engaging in activities that strengthen your core and create stability in your hips. Classes in yoga or Tai Chi can help focus and improve your stability as well as your balance.
It is not uncommon for your balance to worsen as you age. Growing older increases the loss of physical strength and bone density. This means it also takes longer to recover from a fall. The good news is that it’s never too late to slow the process of deterioration and improve your balance, thus reducing the risk of falls.
Wear Proper Shoes
The shoes you wear can play a big part in preventing falls, especially outside your home. When the floors in your home are clear and clean, walking barefoot can be safe. However, proper shoes are a critical component of personal protective equipment, especially when you’re outside.
The soles of the shoes should not be slick, which increases the risk of falling. Your shoelaces should be tied correctly so they do not come undone and become a tripping hazard. If you slip and fall, your footwear may be evaluated by the opposing insurance company or attorney to see if it contributed to the accident.
Call Abel Law Firm After a Slip and Fall
If you had a slip and fall accident due to another person’s negligence, you may be entitled to compensation. This can help cover your medical expenses and lost wages if you were unable to immediately return to work. The experienced and compassionate Oklahoma team of Abel Law Firm understands the financial and emotional burden that results from a serious accident.
We are here to help guide you through the insurance process, negotiate with the at-fault party’s insurance company, or protect your rights in court. Contact our offices at (405) 239-7046 or online to schedule your free case evaluation.