While you may know there are risks every time you step out of your home, you may not think about them when you are out in the community. Often, you may be more focused on your to-do list than a potential hazard. When you visit an establishment, or are a guest on the property of another, you should not have to worry about your safety.
Owners, occupants and property managers are supposed to be responsible for maintaining and marking hazards on their property. However, there are times when an owner will dismiss a known hazard that could be dangerous that could lead to a severe injury.
Duty Of Care
Property owners are supposed to ensure that their grounds and facility are safe and free from hazards that could lead to an injury. When an owner does not repair or mark a potential risk, they breach their duty of care.
Slips, Trips And Falls
You likely do not stare at the ground or floor, scanning for hazards when walking. Instead, you are probably focused on what is ahead and the next task on your mental checklist.
When a parking lot, sidewalk or indoor floor is slippery or in disrepair, it can lead to a slip-and-fall or a trip-and-fall. Cracks in concrete, known — but difficult to see — flaws and holes, uneven pavement and known spills all create hazards for visitors to a property. The list of potential hazards may seem endless. You have likely seen industrial carpets with rubber backing in the entryways of stores, businesses and other establishments. Note that a loose, non-commercial-type rug can slide when stepped on, which may cause serious injury.
A non-exclusive list of common hazards include:
- Potholes and/or cracks in pavement
- Uneven stairs
- Wet floors
- Poorly secured or torn rugs
- Rippling or tears in carpeting
- Uneven flooring and stairs
- Broken, missing or inadequately maintained railings
- Poor lighting in stairwells
- Unmarked walkways or stairwells
Another factor for being able to maneuver through a business is lighting. Although dim lights can create a certain ambiance, they can make it difficult to see what could cause an injury.
Property owners need to maintain their lighting so that you and others can see and observe any potential dangers.
Neglect In The Duty Of Care Can Lead To Injuries To Visitors And Guests
When you think about slips, trips, falls and other accidents, you may think of simple bumps and bruises. However, these incidents can lead to broken bones, torn muscles and traumatic brain injuries. These injuries can lead to costly medical bills and long-term damage.
Not all property owners keep their grounds and facilities in proper order. You should be cautious when visiting businesses to ensure the property is safe.