Slip and Fall Accidents

Conditions Leading to Indoor Slip and Fall Accidents

As a business owner it is important that you and your employees take all reasonable steps to prevent slip and fall accidents on your property. Here are some common conditions that lead to slip and fall accidents indoors and the rules regarding a business owner's duties.

Floors

It is expected that businesses will mop, wax or polish their floors. Nonetheless, if a slip and fall accident occurs as the result of a wet floor, the business owner may be liable if the business owner:

  • Fails to provide adequate warnings, such as signs that the floor is wet or damp;
  • Fails to provide adequate barriers to close off an area that is wet or damp;
  • Uses an excessive amount of wax or polish, or applies it unevenly;
  • Treats only part of a floor so that the change in conditions causes a slip and fall;
  • Applies a floor treatment to a sloping or inclining part of the floor;
  • Fails to use a floor treatment with "non-skid" ingredients.

A business owner's neglect in properly maintaining carpeted floors, rugs and mats can also create liability:

  • Torn, worn, broken or bulging areas of carpet;
  • Rugs or mats with curled edges, worn spots or holes with edges sticking up;
  • Items caught in the carpet material that stick up and catch on footwear.

Stairs

Stairs are often made of materials that become worn with continued use. A business owner will be liable if the owner knew of the dangerous condition, or the condition existed for a sufficient amount of time that the owner should have known about it:

  • One or more steps are worn and rounded;
  • Debris such as trash, pieces of paper, dirt, gum, etc..., is present on the stairs;
  • The stairs have been waxed or polished, and the stairs' materials lack a non-skid surface;
  • A handrail is missing or broken.