Florida’s beautiful weather can result in a lot of outdoor recreational time for both residents and visitors. However, more outdoor time could result in a greater chance of slipping and falling, making it important to be aware of risk factors. A slip and fall incident is one of the most common issues leading to personal injury litigation, and preventive measures may be important for avoiding injury.
Weather plays a huge role in slip and fall injury cases, and while ice and snow aren’t common issues in Florida, there are occasional instances. While there isn’t typically a legal requirement to remove accumulated ice or snow, a slip and fall incident due to an unnatural accumulation of either material could result in a property owner’s liability.
Conditions of the outside grounds of an establishment are common sources of problems that could lead to slipping or falling. Poor lighting outside an establishment could result in liability to the property owner if the conditions have been known and left without remedy. Parking lot safety is a major issue, and owners are responsible for proper maintenance to limit the risk of slip and fall accidents due to holes, uneven surfaces or cracks. Similarly, sidewalks used exclusively for access to a business are typically an owner’s responsibility.
An individual who slips or falls in an establishment may feel embarrassed by the episode, leaving quickly to tend to wounds or injuries privately. However, it may be helpful to file an accident report at the location so that the situation is documented. Evidence such as photos of bumps, cracks or other issues that may have contributed to the injury may be helpful in later filing a personal injury claim. Additionally, it may be beneficial to gather names and contact information from any witnesses at the scene.
Source: findlaw.com, “Conditions Leading to Outdoor Slip and Fall Accidents“, September 04, 2014