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Do you know enough about slip, trip and fall accidents?

It's safe to say that when most people make a trip to the nearest shopping mall to buy clothes, grocery store to buy some kitchen essentials or local pharmacy to pick up a prescription, the last thing on their mind is suffering a serious personal injury. In other words, they focus on things like their shopping list and other everyday concerns because they understandably take it for a given that the store in question is safe for customers.

Unfortunately, the reality is that these types of stores often aren't safe for customers. Indeed, a surprisingly large number suffer serious personal injuries in what are known as slip, trip and fall accidents.

What causes slip, trip and fall accidents?

While the majority of slip, trip and fall accidents are caused by wet floors or slippery surfaces, it's important to understand that conditions like imperceptible shifts in flooring, ragged carpeting, inadequate lighting or narrow stairwells can all cause people to lose their footing.

How serious can slip and fall accidents really be?  

There is an unfortunate tendency for people to dismiss slip and fall accidents as being "not all that serious." The reality is quite different, however, as victims routinely suffer serious and even life-altering personal injuries to the head, back, neck, knees and feet. Indeed, severe sprains and broken bones are baseline injuries.    

What does the law have to say about establishing liability for slip, trip and fall accidents?

In general, those injured in slip, trip and fall accidents who are looking to pursue justice via the courts are required to show that 1) the accident was caused by a dangerous condition, and 2) the owner of the property knew about the dangerous condition. While this may seem like a simple enough determination, this is not always the case.

We'll continue examining this topic in a series of posts, including looking at what constitutes a dangerous condition and the statute of limitations for pursuing these types of claims in Rhode Island.

In the meantime, if you or a loved one suffered serious injuries in a slip, trip and fall accident, or in any sort of mishap on property owned by another, consider speaking with an experienced legal professional as soon as possible to learn more about your options.

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