An unexpected slip and fall can easily result in more than just bumps and bruises. A wide range of bones are susceptible to fracturing during a fall, even from relatively short heights. While escalator injuries or tripping down a flight of stairs can be particularly dangerous, any slip and fall on an icy sidewalk or wet grocery store floor can radically impact your future.
Slip and Fall Bone Fracture Basics
Sadly, slip and fall hazards are present in a surprising variety of public and private locations. When Pennsylvanians are hurt in a fall, there is often direct negligence or a premises liability issue at play.
For instance, uneven walkways run by a government agency like SEPTA may not have been repaired, a spill in a grocery store aisle could be left uncleaned, or a friend may not have fixed broken stairs in their home. Slip and falls involving negligence are often caused by:
- Broken railing on staircases
- Bunched up carpets or rugs
- Debris in walkways
- Cracked, broken, or otherwise uneven flooring
- Improper lighting, especially in stairways
- Wet floors
In addition to lacerations, scarring, bruising, or disfiguration, a fall victim may suffer serious fractures. The exact difficulties you can expect to experience after breaking a bone in a fall depend on both the location of the bone and the type of break.
For instance, transverse fractures are straight, right-angle breaks that are easier to treat. Compound fractures, on the other hand, occur when the bone breaks through the skin—creating a risk of additional problems such as infection and internal bleeding. These and other fracture types can occur in bones like:
- Arms and elbows
- Feet and legs
- Hands and fingers
- Spinal vertebrae
On the more serious end of a slip and fall accident, there is potential for paralysis or the need for a wheelchair due to spinal cord damage. Even without that level of permanent injury, however, any fall resulting in a broken bone could produce long-term pain that interferes with everyday activity. Mobility issues after fracturing a bone can also prevent you from returning to work at all or force you to find an entirely different line of work.
A Slip and Fall Lawyer Helps Protect Your Right to a Fair Recovery
When negligent behavior leads to a slip and fall, victims have the legal right to recover damages. To receive the compensation you deserve, an attorney will need to investigate the circumstances of the fall and determine who is liable for your injuries. In a slip and fall case, it’s important to prove the liable party was aware of the problem, had the opportunity to fix the issue but failed to do so, and didn’t properly warn you of the hazard.
The specific source of compensation may not always be exactly who you expect immediately after the accident. You may end up going through homeowner’s insurance or seeking a settlement or court judgment. Depending on the circumstances of the accident, the party liable for your slip and fall injury could include:
- Construction, cleanup, or other kinds of work crews
- Business owner
- Hospital staff
- Private homeowner
- Store managers or employees
Any compensation should obviously cover medical bills due to the bone fracture, but that’s not the end of the story. A skilled slip and fall attorney will ensure the full range of your actual costs is considered when recovering damages.
That means showing the negligent party is also responsible for your wages lost if you can’t effectively work while recovering, as well as disrupted earning potential in the future due to the injury. The full and fair amount owed may additionally cover non-economic damages like pain and suffering, struggles with PTSD and depression, and so on.
Let an Experienced Attorney Lift You Back Up After a Fall
No matter where you fell or how badly you were hurt, you should always seek medical attention after a slip and fall and then contact an attorney. While you put your attention on recovering physically, Heslin Law Firm may be able to help with your financial recovery. Set up a consultation to tell us about your slip and fall accident and discuss your next steps.