Nobody can deny that New York is a spectacular sight in winter, but as temperatures drop in the city that never sleeps, we start seeing more slip-and-fall accidents. Cold weather, along with rain and snow, produces new and hazardous conditions, such as invisible ice. Not only is it dangerous to walk outside, but also to walk in and out of buildings where people’s shoes, umbrellas, and clothes track in water, create puddles, and prime the floors for a possible disaster.
A slip-and-fall may sound harmless, but it can actually result in some serious injuries, such as spinal cord trauma, head injuries, broken bones, and sprains. Slip-and-fall accidents are especially dangerous to the elderly, who can sustain debilitating or even deadly injuries from a small fall.
There are plenty of ways to avoid a potential slip-and-fall. Here are some of our best tips:
- Slow your roll: The worst thing to do in cold weather conditions is to walk briskly. New Yorkers are always on the go and might scoff at the idea of taking it slow, but it’s important to hit the brakes during winter and reduce your pace when walking. It’s better to get there late than to get there with a broken leg.
- Empty hands are better for balance: Avoid carrying heavy loads or things that might throw you off-balance, or slow your response in case a fall does occur.
- Keep your eyes (and feet) peeled for black ice: The most common reason for a winter slip-and-fall is ice. It’s hard to spot, but as long as you’re walking slowly and carefully, you should be able to make it through unscathed. Tap your foot on any uncertain surfaces to test them out before walking on them.
- Soles matter: Wearing slip-resistant footwear can greatly improve your chances of avoiding a painful fall on icy surfaces.
- It’s most dangerous in and out: Be careful getting in and out of buildings. These places accumulate wet patches on the floor, making it very easy to slip up.
- Keep your house safe: Keep the pathways around your house safe. There is nothing more unfortunate than having someone you know get hurt on your own property. To ensure that it doesn’t happen, use salt to thaw icy sidewalks and warn any guests of potentially slippery areas.
Many people are hesitant to contact a lawyer after sustaining a slip-and-fall injury, thinking the accident was their fault. But that’s not always the case. There are many circumstances where business owners as well as city officials have failed to keep the floor, sidewalk, walkway, or street reasonably safe for the public. If your fall was due to a hazardous condition, the parties responsible for the condition may be held liable.
Slip-and-fall accidents can result in some very serious and painful injuries, medical bills, and missed time from work. If you are involved in a slip-and-fall accident or if you have any questions, give our office a call. The Case Handler has a lot of experience with NYC slip-and-fall claims. Call us at 929-223-4195 for a free case evaluation.