You might think it'll never happen to you. You might think you're healthy enough to prevent an injury if you slip and fall. However, numerous workers and property visitors -- whether they're young, old, healthy or out of shape -- die in slip-and-fall accidents every year.
Heavy laborers are particularly at risk of serious slip-and-fall incidents. It's one thing to trip on a crack in the sidewalk while you're going for a jog. It's another thing to trip on a crack in the sidewalk while you're carrying a 50-pound sack of potatoes -- or when you lose your balance while scaling a 50-foot extension ladder.
Let's take a look at general industry accident statistics from the U.S. Department of Labor. Slips, trips and falls cause:
- 15 percent of accident fatalities, second only to motor vehicles.
- 25 percent of personal injury claims annually.
- 65 percent of lost days of work annually, amounting to over 95 million lost days of work.
Considering these statistics, is it any surprise why the smartest employers take great care to train their workers on safety measures they can take to prevent slip and falls? Is it any surprise that employers strive to remove slip-and-fall dangers from workplaces?
No matter how hard we try, slip-and-fall dangers will always be there. Fortunately in most cases, when a slip-and-fall event hurts a worker, the worker can pursue workers' compensation benefits to pay for his or her medical care. Also, in select instances, when a visitor to a property falls and gets hurt, he or she may be able to pursue a personal injury claim for damages in court
Source: OSHA, "Plan Ahead to Get the Job Done Safely," accessed Nov. 17, 2017