Articles Posted in Slip and Fall

Falls are the leading cause of injuries suffered by elders in Massachusetts, according to a recent news article from the Worcester Telegram.  This article focuses on how these falls are not only dangerous for elders, but are also largely preventable. In terms of a personal injury lawsuit involving an elder injury, it is often a question of whether or not a defendant acted reasonably so as to prevent the fall accident from occurring.

wheelchair5One man interviewed for the article said his fall was a result of wearing socks on slick bathroom tiles. He suffered serious injuries as a result of his fall in the bathroom, and he showed the results of those injuries to his classmates in an exercise program to help get seniors to improve their balance and maintain their strength, so these types of accidents are less likely to happen in the future.  He also said beyond stretching and improving his balance, he is learning to be more cognizant of his movements as means of preventing another serious fall accident. Continue reading

In Goodwin v. Al J. Schneider Co., a case recently weighed by the Kentucky Supreme Court, plaintiff was injured while attending a convention at a hotel and conference center owned by defendant.  Plaintiff was staying at the hotel with his wife and was injured while taking a shower.

wheelchair5According to court records, plaintiff was tying to step into the bathtub to take a shower when he slipped and fell to the floor, thus injuring his knee.  In his personal injury lawsuit following his slip-and-fall accident, plaintiff alleged that this bathtub did not have a grab bar, and there was not a bathmat at the bottom of the tub. He also testified that, after the fall, the hotel gave him a bathmat, and that he learned that other guests had bathmats in their rooms. Continue reading

When someone is going to subdivide a parcel of real property, often before it can be sold as a build-able lot, the land owner will have to get a survey performed. While surveying has changed a great deal over the past 10 years as we moved from using chains similar to how a First Down in football is marked to sophisticated laser devices, surveying still relies heavily on the use of landmarks.

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A landmark can be a natural thing such as large tree, or it can be an item placed in the ground by the surveyor.  The purpose of the survey is to mark off where one property ends and the adjacent one begins and then create a map or survey of that land to record in the records office. This way, there is no question as to where the property line is situated.  One of the common methods for marking these lines is for a surveyor to place a wooden stake in the ground and then put a safety flag on it to make it visible. After the perimeter has been marked, the surveyor will then replace the stake with a piece of metal rebar known as an iron and sink it into the ground so it can be found on a metal detector.  Continue reading

In Edwards v. Hy-Vee Inc., an injury lawsuit heard recently by the Nebraska Supreme Court, plaintiff was shopping at a grocery store owned by defendant.  While plaintiff was in the store, an employee was handing out samples of watermelon to customers.  When the plaintiff was about six feet away from the man handing out watermelon samples, she slipped and fell to the floor.

caution-wet-floor-sign-1-1006453-mShe filed a lawsuit against the defendant, and there was testimony that the reason for her fall was that she slipped on what appeared to be watermelon.  She argues that the store knew or should have known that the floor was wet due to the watermelon and that a customer could likely slip and fall on that watermelon, which is what happened in this case. Continue reading

Proving negligence in a sidewalk slip-and-fall case can be challenging due to a myriad of factors.sidewalk2

The first reason is that, more often than not, you’re dealing with a public entity, with all of the legal hurdles that entails (i.e., sovereign immunity, etc.).The second reason is that you have to prove the defendant had actual or constructive knowledge of the defect. That means the defendant was either informed of the actual flaw or that the defect existed for such a length of time the defendant, in using reasonable care, should have learned about it.

Although we don’t tend to think of trip-and-fall negligence cases as requiring an expert witness as we would for, say, a medical malpractice lawsuit, it’s something that may need to be considered.  Continue reading

Two years ago, the family of a 4-year-old boy killed in a 2011 escalator accident at the Auburn Mall Massachusetts reached a settlement with the escalator manufacturer and owner of the store where the escalator accident took place. escalator

The child was fatally injured when a guardrail on the escalator pulled him through a gap between a plexiglass divider and the escalator and he fell 18 feet onto a display case below. He died at the hospital the next day of blunt force trauma to the head.

According to recent statistics published by the American Association for Justice, this case was indicative of so many escalator accidents that happen every year in that it:

  • Involved a young child;
  • Involved a fall.

The report indicated there are a growing number of escalator injuries in the U.S. every year, most involving children or the elderly, and a significant number involving not entrapment, but falls. Continue reading

The Iowa Supreme Court has set for retrial the case of Alcala v. Marriott Int’l, Inc., a slip-and-fall case that involves a hotel business guest who was injured after a fall on an ice-slicked walkway on the property. icewalk

Boston residents are well familiar with the phenomenon of ice and snow during the brutal winter months. Of course, it’s not something many want to spend time thinking about at the start of summer, but it’s worth keeping abreast of legal developments on this front because it does affect many in Massachusetts for a good six months out of the year.

In Massachusetts, the 2010 ruling of Papadopoulos v. Target Corp. upended the previous slip-and-fall standard when it came to snow and ice, which was that there was no liability for naturally-accumulated ice and snow, but there was for unnaturally-accumulated ice and snow. The Maine Supreme Judicial Court held that a property owner owed a duty to lawful visitors in both cases to protect them from hazards arising from snow and ice. Whether a property owner’s action is “reasonable” will depend on a myriad of factors, including likelihood of injury, probable seriousness of such injuries and how great a burden it is to reduce or avoid that risk altogether.  Continue reading

A woman in Nevada is seeking recovery for brain injury she suffered in July 2013 after a slip-and-fall at a home improvement store while she was shopping for palm trees for her garden. She alleges the outdoor area was covered with water, and presented an unreasonable risk of injury to business invitees on the property.waterpuddle03

Defendant store, meanwhile, contends plaintiff was contributorily negligent and that she actually fell on top of a four-foot orange “caution” cone that was placed near the accumulated water to warn customers of the risk. Plaintiff has countered this was not sufficient as there was no “Wet Floor” sign and defendant knew this was not enough to warn customers, considering there had been 33 similar falls at other stores across the country – including two previous slip-and-fall accidents at this very same location.

The 38-year-old mother of three said as a result of her slip-and-fall, she suffered a fractured skull and brain injury that resulted in a permanent loss of smell and taste. Continue reading

Those who followed the United States Open tennis tournament are probably aware that tennis star Eugenie Bouchard was injured in an alleged slip and fall incident in the trainer’s room at the United States Tennis Association (USTA) Billie Jean King National Tennis Center (NTC) in Flushing, New York.

tennis-fun-2-1398396She recently filed a lawsuit in federal court in New York against the USTA, in which she alleges the organization had allowed a foreign substance to accumulate on the floor of the trainer’s room at the NTC, and this caused her to slip and fall, which resulted in a serious head injury. Specifically, her complaint alleges that following a match in the evening, she went to the trainer’s room inside the female locker room, where she slipped on the then-unknown substance and was seriously injured. Continue reading

According to a recent news article from the West Virginia Record, a woman slipped and fell inside a Wal-Mart store and is alleging negligence in connection with her premises liability case against the big box retailer.

caution-wet-floor-sign-1-1006453-mIn her complaint against the retailer she alleged there was a foreign substance on the floor inside the store. She said the store management was negligent in allowing the substance to accumulate on the floor in June of 2013. She claims the liquid caused her slip and fall in manner that resulted in substantial physical pain and suffering. Continue reading