Many slips and falls only result in minor scrapes and bruises. But sometimes, a slip and fall could result in severe and debilitating injuries. One of the most serious types of injuries that result from slips and falls is a traumatic brain injury. TBI can occur when a fall victim hits their head on the floor or on an object as they fall.
How Common Are TBIs and Slip and Falls?
While slip and fall accidents can result in a wide variety of physical injuries, traumatic brain injuries are unfortunately common. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control, fall accidents like slips and falls account for approximately half of all hospitalizations for traumatic brain injuries. The National Floor Safety Institute reports that slip and fall incidents account for approximately one million emergency room visits every year.
Causes of Slip and Falls
Common causes of slip and fall accidents include:
- Recently mopped or waxed floors
- Spilled foods and liquids
- Buildup of snow and ice
- Water, mud, or plant debris tracked in from outside
- Loose and broken flooring, carpeting, or rugs
- Broken stairs or handrails
- Uneven transitions between floor heights or flooring surfaces
- Poor lighting
- Lack of warning signs
What Are the Symptoms of a TBI?
Symptoms of a mild traumatic brain injury include:
- Nausea and vomiting
- Loss of balance
- Speech issues
- Sensitivity to light and/or sound
- Memory and concentration problems
- Mood changes or swings
- Difficulty sleeping or sleeping more than usual
- Loss of consciousness for a few seconds or minutes
- Ringing in the ears, a bad taste in the mouth, or blurred vision
Symptoms of a moderate to severe TBI include:
- Unconsciousness that lasts for several minutes to several hours
- Persistent or worsening headache
- Persistent nausea and vomiting
- Dilation of the pupils
- Draining of clear fluid from the ears or nose
- Weakness or numbness in fingers or toes
- Coordination issues
- Slurred speech
- Confusion and disorientation
- Agitation or other unusual behavior
Who Might Be Responsible?
In most slip and fall cases, the owner of the property where the accident took place can be held responsible for injuries suffered in the fall. Property owners must keep their premises safe for visitors and guests. If a visitor slips or trips on a hazardous condition on the property, the owner might be found responsible for the resulting injuries.
Under certain circumstances, other parties might be held responsible for a slip and fall accident. For example, if a slip and fall happened in a store, a restaurant, or another leased commercial property, the business owner rather than the property owner might be held responsible. That’s because business tenants generally have to maintain the leased portion of their premises. Similarly, when a slip and fall occurs in a residential tenant’s leased unit, the tenant would be responsible for the accident.
Other third parties might also be held responsible for slip and fall accidents. If someone slips in an area where a third-party company is contracted to perform maintenance, that company might bear responsibility for the accident.
What Types of Compensation Might I Be Owed?
If you’ve suffered a TBI in a slip and fall accident on someone else’s property, you might be owed compensation. A settlement or judgment might cover:
- Medical, rehabilitation, and home health care bills
- Lost income and future expected earnings
- Pain and suffering
- Reduced quality of life or reduced life expectancy caused by the TBI
How a Traumatic Brain Injury Lawyer Could Help
A traumatic brain injury could have a permanent impact on your life. A lawyer could help you pursue compensation for a TBI sustained in a slip and fall by:
- Reviewing evidence from the accident scene to determine what caused the fall and who can be held responsible for your injuries
- Calculating the full value of your legal claim to ensure that you receive the financial resources you may need for your future care
- Pursuing compensation from the at-fault parties and insurance companies
- Negotiating for a fair and full settlement or, if necessary, taking your case to court
If you’ve suffered a traumatic brain injury after a slip and fall accident on someone else’s property, you might be entitled to financial compensation for your injuries. Call or contact the Fairfax premises liability attorneys of Whitestone Young, P.C. at (703) 591-0200 for a free, no-obligation consultation. Speak with a knowledgeable slip and fall accident attorney about your legal rights and options today.