Avoid Slip-and-Falls Accidents in Malls

by | Dec 6, 2013 | Personal Injury

Holiday shoppers can get their holiday shopping done Penn Square Mall, Quail Springs Mall. Folks in Norman have Sooner Fashion Mall and in Tulsa, holiday-happy shoppers will go to Woodland Hills Mall, Tulsa Promenade and Utica Square Shopping Center in search of the perfect gift.

Winter weather can make even a holiday shopping trip treacherous, and Oklahoma residents need to be cautious in malls and stores where slippery floors, flooded parking lots, crowds, and high winds can contribute to slip-and fall injuries.

Slip-and-fall accidents are no joke: Unintentional falls caused 26,009 deaths in 2010, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Overall, falls accounted for more than 21% of all unintentional deaths in 2010.

Uneven pavement, wet showroom floors, and crowded entryways can create unsafe conditions.

The U.S. Occupational Health and Safety Administration offers tips for avoiding slip-and-fall accidents.

The list is geared toward employers who are responsible for workplace safety, but the information provides insight on how stores, malls, and other businesses should keep consumers safe:

  • Maintain clean, dry floors. Wet floors are a slip-and fall hazard. Fungus and bacteria can grow in areas that are frequently wet. Microorganisms can make floors extremely slick.
  • Use warning signs for wet floors. If an employee mops an area and does not leave an alert, people can slip and fall.
  • Maintain drains, floor mats, and other measures to dry out areas that frequently get wet and minimize wet surfaces.
  • Make sure that aisles are clear so that people can exit in an emergency and walk freely. Tripping over obstructions can cause falling and crushing injuries.
  • Treat floors of wet areas with no-skid wax or grit. Traction in no-slip areas can prevent slip-and-fall accidents.
  • Fix bulges or rolls in the carpet that present a tripping hazard.
  • Install sufficient lighting to prevent stumbles and falls.
  • Renovate and correct uneven surfaces.
  • Store medical supplies in an easy-to-access location.
  • Encourage good working habits in cramped or crowded spaces.

Slip-and-fall accidents are serious and cause injuries from sprains and bruises to traumatic brain jury.

Although most people are safety-conscious, accidents happen and Oklahomans who suffer slip-and-fall injuries do have legal rights under premises liability law. Business owners are responsible for making sure their premises are safe for the public.