One of the staples of humor, especially slapstick comedy, is the slip and fall maneuver. Countless films, plays, and TV shows have trolled for laughs by having one or more characters pretend to engage in a full-fledged pratfall. Usually, these characters get up and act like they didn’t feel a thing.
But the reality of the slip and fall is no laughing matter. It’s all too common that people who experience a slip and fall find out just how painful and costly they can be. And if you’re a business owner, having an employee or a customer slip and fall in your establishment and then sue you can sometimes be enough to sink your business for good.
Here are eight slip-and-fall facts to consider:
- Forget about power tool mishaps, sports injuries, or motor vehicle accidents. Slips and falls make up the number one category of accidental injury in the U.S. So if you do see someone fall, don’t just brush it off and assume he or she is all right.
- According to the Consumer Product Safety Commission, more than 5,400 fall injuries each day in America are caused by floors or flooring materials. Think about that the next time you want to procrastinate fixing that tear in the carpet or that uneven spot in your concrete, wood, or tile floor.
- Some 85 percent of all worker’s compensation claims in the U.S. involve a worker who falls on a slick floor, according to the Industrial Safety & Occupational Health Markets. That’s why it’s so important to clean up flooring spills and moisture immediately in your workplace.
- Data indicates that over one million people visit the emergency room annually due to slip-and-fall related injuries. Since ER costs are usually pretty high, look for an urgent care or similar facility near your business where victims can get less expensive treatment.
- This may seem counterintuitive, but a study by Dr. W. Monroe Keyserling reveals that the majority of compensation-resulting falls occur at ground level. So if your business requires employees to work up high, don’t focus your safety efforts so much on them that you forget about traditional slip-and-fall hazards.
- Slip and fall injuries are the top cause of both occupational injuries and worker’s compensation claims for employees 55 years old and above. While it’s great to have experienced, well-seasoned workers on your staff, you should be aware of the propensity for falls among this age group.
- It’s easier to prove negligence by a property owner in a slip-and-fall case that takes place at a business than it is with an incident that occurs in a private home. That’s because the legal “duty of care” is stricter for businesses than homeowners.
- The National Floor Safety Institute says that the average cost of defending a slip and fall lawsuit is $50,000. That’s money your business probably doesn’t have on hand. Be sure that you do everything possible to safeguard the well-being of your customers and employees.
Obviously, a major part of your floor safety strategy can be the placement of one or more high-quality floor mats from Ultimate Mats. They can be put down at entryways to keep people from tracking soils and wetness into your work space, and they can also prevent slip-and-fall accidents when positioned in employee workspaces like kitchens, food preparation areas, and bathrooms. Why not call Ultimate Mats today, before someone gets hurt by slipping and falling at your business?