The main features of a bathroom, such as sinks, toilets, trash cans, and even tile, make slip and fall accidents highly possible. Many of these features also get used multiple times each day, so the chance of a slip and fall accident goes up considerably.
Many restroom fixtures involve water, which can lead to spills and slippery surfaces. Trash cans might overflow if they are not maintained, which can cause items to be thrown onto the floor. Irregularities on the flooring, even a crack in the tile, can catch a heel and cause a person to fall.
This is hardly what someone wants to think when entering a public restroom, especially when going in with family members who are very young or old. However, slip and fall accidents commonly happen at public restrooms. If a slip and fall accident does happen, the injured party should speak to a lawyer about their legal options.
What are the Responsibilities of the Property Owner?
The property owner needs to have known about a problem in the bathroom in order to fix it, and the owner needs enough time to address it as well. If the owner was alerted to a bathroom leak at the same time the accident happened, the owner did not have enough time to remedy the problem. Although there should be regular checks on the facilities, accidents and leaks can happen quickly, and if the owner is not aware of a hazard, it may not get corrected in a timely manner.
It is important to consider that maintenance and housekeeping are often contracted out to another company. That company should be contacted as well about the accident and the conditions. Since fault is difficult to prove in a slip and fall accident case, it is best to consult a lawyer.
The property owner has a duty of care to maintain their premises. Duty of care means the owner should avoid any behaviors or omissions that could harm guests on the premises. That means that wet floors in a public restroom need to be dried off, pipes need to be fixed, and trash and litter needs to be picked up off the floor in a reasonable timeframe.
What Should I Do if I Slip and Fall at a Public Bathroom?
If you fall at a public bathroom, there are a few steps you should do immediately, including:
- Get medical attention. Call for medical attention if it is possible. If you are not the injured party, you or someone else needs to make the call for them. This is important because injured people do not always know they are hurt. Adrenaline take over, and when it wears off, people start feeling the pain from the injury. It is best to get a doctor’s opinion right away after a slip and fall accident.
- Report the incident. This is important for establishing the facts around the incident and making management aware that there is a problem that needs to be addressed. Talking to management about this may prevent an accident from happening to another person.
- Limit your communications with management. Do not engage in an argument because anything can be used against you if you pursue a legal case at a later time.
- Take photographs of injuries and conditions. One of the assets of a cellphone is that it has a handy camera feature that can be used to document what actually happened. The more information, the better.
- Look for witnesses. If there are people around, ask them if they saw the incident. If someone witnessed the slip and fall accident, get their name and contact information.
- Do not sign anything. The property owner’s insurance company is likely to contact you after a slip and fall accident to ask for a recorded statement. They may ask you to sign paperwork. Avoid signing anything if you do not have a lawyer. These matters are best handled with the guidance of a lawyer.
- Contact a lawyer right away. You will need a legal advocate who knows what to look for and what will prove the claim.
What are Common Slip and Fall Injuries?
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), more than one million people are involved in slip and fall accidents every year. Many people believe slip and fall accidents are minor, but that is not always the case. Slip and fall accidents can cause significant injuries. Some common slip and fall injuries include:
- Broken bones
- Back and neck injuries
- Head injuries
- Spinal cord injuries
Slip and fall accidents can happen anywhere, not just public restrooms. However, slip and falls at public restrooms are common. A public restroom could be at work, at a highway rest stop, a restaurant or store, or even a government building. No matter where a slip and fall accident occurs, the injured party should seek legal counsel, especially if they believe they have severe injuries.
Mount Laurel Slip and Fall Accident Lawyers at the Law Office of David S. Rochman Advocate for Those Injured at Public Restrooms
Public restrooms can be hazardous if they are not properly maintained. If you were injured in a slip and fall accident because of a negligent property owner, our Mount Laurel slip and fall accident lawyers at the Law Office of David S. Rochman can help. Contact us online or call us at 856-751-2345 for a free consultation. Located in Mount Laurel, New Jersey, we serve clients throughout the surrounding areas.