What’s a little slip-and-fall, right? People have been slipping on banana peels for laughs ever since the first on-stage pratfall got a chuckle out of the audience.
Unfortunately, the idea of a trip, slip and subsequent fall as something comedic is so deeply ingrained in television and movies these days that many people underestimate how serious one can be.
A quick slip and a bad fall can lead to far more than a wounded pride. Falls are actually the single largest reason behind hospital trips. They account for more than a fifth of all emergency room visits.
Half of the accidental deaths that occur in people’s homes are caused by ground-level falls. In falls that occur at work, women and men are equally represented, but women are less likely to die. Women who fall at work only die about 5 percent of the time, Men die due to a fall at work around 11 percent of the time.
A fall can devastate the health of older individuals. Falls can lead to fractures in hips and spines, which can put older victims into wheelchairs. It can be difficult to regain mobility after a serious fall with broken bones.
It’s also possible that sepsis or other complications following a serious injury from a fall can settle in and create a cascade of health problems from which someone might never recover.
People often underestimate their danger of slipping and falling, especially on familiar ground. Unfortunately, familiar territory is no substitute for adequate lighting, clean sidewalks, well-maintained parking lots that are free of debris and potholes and level steps.
Even a tear in a carpet can catch the end of someone’s heel and send him or her tumbling face forward onto the ground with a force strong enough to break a bone.
Anyone who has fallen due to poorly maintained conditions inside or outside a building should consider exploring their legal options regarding a personal injury claim. Even falls from ground level can leave you recovering and unable to work for quite a long time.