How to avoid slip-and-fall injuries

Virtually all West Virginia workers are exposed to various hazards throughout the day that could lead to slip-and-fall accidents. A majority of such accidents involve falls from the same level, falls caused by ice or snow and falls from a different level. Workers could also fall from stairs, slip on liquids or fall into openings. Then there are slips where victims almost fall but catch themselves.

Slip-and-fall injuries can range from strain, sprains and bruises to broken bones and concussions. It should also be remembered that slip and falls most often occur in the months of December, January and February.

To avoid slip and falls, workers are encouraged to keep their walkways clear and take note of hazards like mats and cords. Cords should be removed or taped to the floor. Workers should also clean up liquid spills immediately. Even with a clear walkway, people can injure themselves if they don't watch where they step. Putting away the smartphone is an essential first step.

Workers should also hold back from improvising. For example, if they need something stored on a high shelf, they should use a step stool or ladder rather than climb on chairs or boxes. Having well-fitting, slip-resistant shoes with good tread is also crucial.

Someone who slips or falls on another's property might want to consult with a lawyer about filing a premises liability claim. The first step is determining the victim's status as a lawful entrant and, with it, the property owner's duty of care to entrants of that status. If it's clear that the owner broke the duty of care, then the lawyer could go ahead and have investigators build up a case against the owner. The lawyer can handle negotiations out of court.

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