In this guide, we outline the most common injuries, the top causes and general winter safety tips that will prevent you from slipping and falling this winter season. We also go over whether someone else should be held liable for your injury and the importance of seeking legal advice.
The only thing that should be falling this winter is the snow, not you!
Most Common Slip/Fall Injuries
Among the list of injuries you or a loved one could suffer from a slip or fall, the top ones include:
1. Head Injuries
Falls are the most common cause of traumatic brain injury. Whether this is a minor concussion or a severe case that causes frequent seizures, mood changes, etc, it’s important to seek medical attention as soon as possible.
2. Hip Fractures
95% of broken hips are a result of falling down and are very common amongst the elderly population. Hip fractures cause an extensive list of complications including undergoing surgery. Often times hip injuries are the reason people go into nursing homes.
3. Back And Spinal Cord Injuries
Falling has a great impact on your body, no matter if you fall forwards or backwards. Fractured vertebraes, and herniated disks are among the top back and spinal cord injuries the body faces. These injuries limit mobility and cause excruciating pain. Nerve damage as a result of back and spinal injury is popular, and can result in paralysis.
4. Shoulder Injuries
People often tuck their arms in and push out their shoulders to bare the most impact of the fall on the way down. This can result in shoulder dislocation or an injury called “brachial plexus” which affects the nerves connecting the spinach cord to the shoulder, arm and hand.
5. Sprains and fractures
Twisting a knee, ankle or tearing ligaments are common in falls, especially in the elderly due to weaker bones. The fall doesn’t even have to be from that high of a distance in order to sprain or fracture a bone depending on the overall density.
Top Causes of Slips/Falls/ Who Is Liable?
Here is a list of the top causes of winter slips and falls, as well as if someone else could be held liable for your injury.
1. Snowy/ Icy Weather Conditions
Weather is tricky in determining liability because there is no controlling over the forces of nature. If snow accumulates outside a building, the property owner is not required by law to shovel it away.
With that said, if the snowfall accumulates enough to turn to ice then the building owner may be held liable for your injury.
2. Poor Lighting
Dim or flickering lighting existing in public spaces can make it very difficult in seeing the ground. This blocks potential obstructions from your vision and increases your chances of slipping/falling. If the property owner knew of this lighting problem previously, and took no safety measures to fix it, then they can be held liable.
3. Dangerous Parking Lots
The property owner of the lot has a responsibility for keeping it safe to use. This includes filling potholes, cracks and leveling issues. Failing to keep up with these important maintenance requirements can hold them liable if you suffer an injury in the lot.
4. Unsafe Sidewalks
If the sidewalk is owned by the city, then the property owner won’t be held liable. But, if this strip of sidewalk belongs exclusively to a business and meant for visitor usage, then it’s their responsibility to keep it safe. The business owner can be held liable for your injury in this case.
General Winter Safety Tips
Taking preventative measures before stepping outside this winter season will keep you safe. Here is a list of tips to keep in mind to ensure you’re able to enjoy the most of the winter season, risk free!
Wear Proper Footwear
Take Smaller Steps
Take Special Care When Exiting Vehicles
Have Nothing In Your Hands
Exercise For Better Stability
Be Observant Of Your Surroundings
Report Any Untreated Public Areas
Increase Lighting Around Your House
Shovel, Salt and Maintain Your Personal Property
Be Cautious Of Black Ice
If You Slip and Fall This Winter Season, Contact Conte & Associates Now
Slipped on an icy sidewalk? Tripped over a pothole in a public parking lot? Conte & Associates can help.
We know that accidents happen, but when it’s someone else’s fault, they need to be held accountable. That’s why we fight for you.
Our team of aggressive and experienced personal injury lawyers in Toronto will get you the settlement you deserve. It’s time to move on with your life, and we’ll help you get started.
Contact Conte & Associates today to book your free consultation. Accidents can change your life, but we can change the outcome.