Imagine you are walking through a store, and suddenly, you slip and fall. According to the National Floor Safety Institute, slips and falls are the highest cause of injuries.
In such a situation, knowing what to do next is imperative to ensuring your safety and protecting your rights. It is a good idea to have a plan in your mind before anything like this happens, as it can greatly protect you if you end up in court.
Step 1: Assess
The most important thing to do right away is to assess yourself for serious medical issues that need immediate medical attention. If you are able to, try to get up slowly and carefully, but stay still if you have broken bones or severe pain and call for help. Do not try to brush off potential injuries as you could make them worse if you do not get proper medical attention.
Step 2: Report
Once you can, report the incident to the store management or have someone else do it for you. Find an employee or a manager and let them know what happened, or if you had to leave due to your injuries, you should call as soon as possible. This helps create an official record of the incident. Be sure to get the name and contact information of anyone you speak to from the store.
Step 3: Gather
You now want to gather evidence that you can use if you need to make a legal claim. If there were any witnesses to your fall, ask for their contact information and get a brief statement from them about what they saw. Take pictures of the area where you fell and any hazards, such as wet floors or obstacles, that may have contributed to your accident.
Also, be sure to request the incident report, which is a written account of your fall, from the store. This document allows you to make sure the details the store recorded are accurate while they are fresh in your memory and gives you a chance to object if what they say happened is wrong.
Remember that understanding your rights is essential in a slip-and-fall situation. In certain cases, the property owner or the store might be liable for your injuries if they did not take proper precautions to prevent accidents.