If you were to slip and fall at a retail store or business, would you know what to do? Most people know what to do after a car accident, but a personal injury is much different. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that slip, trip and fall accidents are the second most common cause for lost-workday injuries in general industry. Customers and vendors are also at risk for slip-and-fall accidents in commercial buildings. What happens following an accident will help you demonstrate that the property owner was negligent or not.
- Get medical attention. Many falls are minor, but internal damage and head trauma are possible. Keep all documentation and bills you receive from the providers.
- If you can, inspect the area where you fell. Take pictures of the area and write down what happened. Add notes about the weather or other conditions that could have caused your fall. Memories fade.
- Identify any witnesses and get their information. Even if someone did not actually see you fall but came to your aid, get that person’s name to describe the conditions of the floor or lighting at the time of the fall.
- Follow the procedure of the business. Most stores have a form that will need to be filled out to report an injury. Talk to a manager or supervisor or get the name of the building’s owner. Keep notes of who you told. When you write out what happened, include just the facts.
- Save evidence. Download your photos to a hard drive or the cloud. Print out the photos. Put all the information in one folder to have at hand if you need it. Save your clothes and shoes.
Take care of yourself
Your health is the first consideration. Once you know the extent of your injuries from a slip and fall accident, if they are serious, you might want to talk to an attorney before you speak to the insurance company.