Slipping or tripping on stairs is not an uncommon occurrence. In many cases, people might feel embarrassed and would prefer to just dust themselves off, chalk the incident up to clumsiness and keep moving.
However, this is not always possible when an incident causes serious injuries. And according to recent reports, 1 million people are injured on stairs every year. In fact, researchers calculated that someone suffers a stair-related injury every 30 seconds. If you are one of the many victims of a stair-related injury, then there are some things you need to know.
Your injuries could be worse than you think
There is a tendency for people to downplay their pain or try to “walk it off” after slipping, tripping or falling on stairs. However, your injuries could prove to be far more serious than you thought.
These types of incidences can lead to severe sprains, bruising, broken bones, lacerations and even concussions. Without proper medical treatment, these injuries can get worse and/or lead to other troubling conditions.
Your accident may not be your fault
One study suggests that about 60 percent of stair accidents are without cause, meaning about 40 percent of them stem from a specific condition. This could include:
- Broken handrails
- Missing treads
- Obstacles in a stairwell
- Poor lighting
- Loose carpeting
- Stairs that do not meet current building codes
You have legal options
The owner of a premise is typically responsible for maintaining safe conditions and fixing or warning people of these and other hazards. If an owner fails to do this, he or she can be held liable for damages you suffer as a result of an accident.
Before you dismiss your legal options or assume you have none to begin with, it can be crucial that you discuss your case with an attorney experienced in recovering damages for victims of stair-related injuries and other types of premises liability claims.