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slip and fall accident statistics

A slip-and-fall accident could lead to severe injuries. If you or a loved one fell and were injured due to the negligence of others, you are likely entitled to receive compensation for your losses. Hospitals, businesses, nursing facilities, and employers are legally bound to keep the premises safe for any individual lawfully on the property.

If you suffered an injury in a falling accident, see your doctor first, then consult with a reputable slip and fall lawyer. The personal injury attorneys at Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers, LLC can fight aggressively on your behalf to ensure your physical and financial recovery.

On this page, we discuss slip and fall accident statistics so you can take precautions to avoid this common source of serious injury.

What is a Slip and Fall Accident?

Slip and fall accidents are often the results of a hazardous condition where a victim falls on a slippery surface, trips over an electrical wire, or slips on an icy sidewalk. However, not every hazardous situation is a legal liability to the premises owner.

Valid cases can be filed for compensation through a claim or lawsuit. The injured party’s attorney will likely build a case using premises liability laws, citing negligence as the cause of the accident.

The case might be based on sole or shared liability determined by who was in charge of the property when the accident occurred. Store owners must place a wet floor sign around spilled liquids, remove ice and snow on sidewalks, or place a barrier around any hazardous situation that could cause harm.

Slip and Fall Statistics and Facts

  • Over 50% of all accidental deaths occur in the household
  • Slips and falls account for 50% of all accidental deaths at home
  • Over 9 million adults and children visited the emergency room in 2019 for fall-related injuries (22.1% of all ER visits)
  • Over 32,000 people died in a slip-and-fall accident in the United States in 2019
  • Only a tiny percentage of falls occur on elevations like ladders and stairways
  • Approximately 33% of people 65 years and older will experience a fall every year
  • Up to 30% of people experience injuries after falling, including head trauma, hip fracture, or laceration
  • The National Safety Council [1] revealed that over 35,000 individuals died from a slip and fall accident in 2019.
  • Hospital records indicate that over 8 million patients visit the emergency room every year for a slip, trip, and fall injury
  • Slip and fall incidents account for more severe injuries in the United States than car accidents
  • Slip and fall accident injuries remain the leading cause of non-fatal medical treatment in the United States

Fatal Slip and Fall Accident Statistics

  • Slips and falls remain the leading cause of injury-related deaths in seniors over sixty-four years of age.
  • More traumatic brain injuries are caused by falling than any other contributing factor
  • The National Safety Council ranks falling with the highest odds of dying (one and 127), ranking sixth in the leading causes of death in the United States
  • More hip fractures, spinal cord injuries, and traumatic brain injuries are caused by a slip and fall incident than motor vehicle accidents
  • Approximate 48,000 individuals require days off from work in 2019 due to severe injuries from falling
  • Nearly an equal number of males and females died in fall-related injuries, although more women were involved in slip and fall accidents.
  • Bone fractures were the most severe consequence of falling, conifer approximately 5% of all fall-related injuries
  • Slip and fall accidents account for 12% of all falls (1 million visits to emergency rooms) annually
  • Injuries from slip and fall accidents remain the primary cause of missing work
  • More workers’ compensation claims are filed for slip and fall accidents on the job than any other factor in individuals fifty-five years and older
  • The Consumer Product Safety Commission [2] recognizes that damaged or slippery floors and flooring material contribute to over 2 million fall-related injuries every year
  • Hip fractures from falling continue to be the most severe health problem related to preventable deaths among the elderly in the US
  • Approximately 33% of people 65 years or older will experience a fall in the United States and half of those have a history of falling
  • CDC records show that over 15,000 males and females sixty-five years and older died from falling in 2015, a statistic that nearly doubled from a decade earlier
  • The CDC reports that approximately 1.75 million people 65 years and older were transported to the emergency room for treatment due to a fall in 2015
  • Falling remains the second leading cause of injury-related fatalities for people between 65 and 84 years of age
  • Fall-related injuries are the primary cause of injury-related fatalities and people 85 years and older
  • The incident rate of falling rises with every decade of life
  • 60% of all fall-related deaths occur to individuals seventy-five years and older annually
  • Approximately 87% of all bone fractures occur in people 65 years and older, often resulting in traumatic brain injuries and spinal cord damage
  • Approximately 50% of seniors sixty-five years and older hospitalized for a broken hip will not return home or continue living an independent life after the fracture
  • More than 40% of nursing home patients were admitted to the facility for around-the-clock medical care and hygiene assistance due to a fall-related injury
  • Nearly 60% of all nursing home patients fall every year
  • The National Institute on Aging [3] reports that 30% of seniors sixty-five years and older will sustain an injury in a fall, and approximately 10% of those will suffer a severe injury
  • Elderly males and females 86 years and older are up to fifteen times more likely to fracture their hip than those 60 to 65 years old
  • Approximately 2,000 Americans visit the emergency room every day for a slip and fall injury

Slip and Fall Accident Statistics in the Workplace

  • OSHA [4] revealed nearly 230,000 reports of non-fatal accidents involving a slip and fall in 2019.
  • In 2019, nearly 900 fatal work-related slips, trips, and falls were reported in all occupational sectors
  • More than 60% of all slip and fall accidents occurred in the retail trade, wholesale, and services industries
  • Slip and fall accidents accounted for 25% of reported work injuries in 2019
  • Fall-related accidents are the primary cause of losing time at work due to injuries
  • Nearly 25% of all employee slip and fall injuries on the job required over 31 days of recovery before returning to work
  • The Bureau of Labor Statistics [5] indicates that men account for 11% of all job-related deaths compared to 5% with women
  • More male employees (65%) than females suffer work-related injuries caused by falling, requiring hospital emergency room visits for treatment
  • The Industrial Safety & Occupational Health Markets revealed that over 85% of workers’ compensation claims involve employees falling on slippery surfaces
  • The National Safety Council reports that more than $70 billion are spent annually on medical costs in financial compensation involving on job slip and fall accidents
  • The number of occupational fatalities caused by falling dropped nearly by half from 1200 annual deaths during the 1970s to about 600 fatalities in 2019
  • More seniors visit emergency rooms for slips and fall than any other age group
  • Temporary or permanent disabling occupational injuries cost approximately $300,000 every year
  • Nearly every service and manufacturing sector deals with workplace fall. However, fatalities are most likely to occur in the mining, construction, and maintenance industries
  • Insurance statistics show that 16% of all workers’ compensation benefits are associated with slip and fall accidents on the job and represent over 25% of costs, compared to 33% of costs for a strain or sprain injury
  • American Trucking Association [6] statistics show that slips and falls are the leading cause of compensable injuries throughout the trucking industry
  • Approximately 40% of all severe falling injury cases occurring on the job involved falling from an elevation
  • OSHA reports that more than 10,000 workers are seriously injured on the job from falling from elevated heights each year. Approximately 300 construction workers are killed every year from falling from heights.

Other statistics released by the CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) reveal that:

  • Roof, ladders, and scaffolding falls are the leading cause of fall-related on-the-job accidents
  • Approximately 57% of all work-related fatalities in the construction industry involved falling from ladders
  • The construction industry accounts for nearly 43% of fatalities from slip and fall accidents in a workplace
  • Trips cause more than 20% of falls on ground level, and slips cause 13%
  • Falling from the existing opening or higher surface accounts for approximately 11% of falls in the workplace
  • The National Flooring Safety Institute (NFSI) reports that the lack of fall protection is the most common violation of US safety standards set by OSHA
  • OSHA anticipates that seven people will die from falling every hour in the workplace by 2030, rising significantly from today’s numbers

The Fatal Four: Slip and Fall Accidents

According to OSHA (Occupational Safety and Health Administration), 20% of all work-related deaths in all age groups occurred on construction sites in 2019. Approximately 60% of these fatalities involved the Fatal Four, including:

  • Slip and fall accidents (39%)
  • Hitting an object or struck by an object (8%)
  • Electrocution (7%)
  • Caught between equipment or in equipment (5%)

OSHA reports that reducing the risk of falling, being struck by an object, electrocution, or being caught in equipment could save the lives of hundreds of workers every year.

Potential Workplace Hazards Leading Cause to Slip and Fall Accidents

All employers must maintain a safe work environment for all employees to prevent accidents. Unfortunately, workplace hazards injured tens of thousands of workers every year.

According to the Consumer Product Safety Commission, slips and falls are the leading cause of most on-the-job injuries and death. The most dangerous conditions and hazardous areas include:

  • Wet, oily, and slippery walkways
  • Floor surfaces in disrepair
  • Unanchored or loose rugs, maps, or carpeting
  • Liquid or powder spills
  • Snowy, rainy, or icy weather hazards
  • Inappropriate footwear
  • Lack of worker training

Slip and Fall Cost Statistics and Facts

Billions are spent every year paying the cost of preventing slip and fall accidents or providing care for injuries after the fall. Typical statistics associated with the cost of slip and fall prevention and care include:

  • The CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) reports an estimated $50 billion (2003 figures) is spent every year treating non-fatal falls
  • Fall-related deaths cost approximately $750 million annually
  • Medicaid and Medicare pay 75% of all severe fall-related injury expenses
  • The CDC estimates the cost of treatment for fatal and nonfatal fall injuries will skyrocket in the years ahead as more baby boomers enter their retirement years

Severe Spine and Brain Injuries Caused by a Slip and Fall

Most fall-related injuries or avoidable. However, many negligent property owners, nursing home operators, and store management failed to maintain reasonably safe premises. Approximately 20% of all falling accidents lead to severe injuries.

The National Safety Council statistics reveal the percentages of injuries from a slip and fall accident include:

  • Significant strains and sprains (9.4%)
  • Traumatic brain injury (8%)
  • Spinal cord injury (7.2%)
  • Fractures and broken bones (5.1 %)

Many victims of slip and fall accidents never regain their previous level of function. Others spent years and rehabilitation, regaining balance from broken hips, normal brain function from a traumatic brain injury, or adapting to the limitations caused by spinal cord injury.

Catastrophic slips and falls usually lead to immediate medical attention in hospital emergency room visits. Others end in a painful death. Studies show that the older people get, they will likely experience injuries from a fall due to declining agility.

Slip and Fall Accidents Among the Elderly

The National Flooring Safety Institute data reveals that falling is most common among older adults, where thousands of people 65 years and older die each year from falls. The potential risk of falling increases significantly with every new decade of life.

The significant reasons senior citizens are most at risk for falling include:

  • Limited mobility
  • Disabilities
  • Limited cognitive awareness
  • Diminished agility
  • Nutritional deficiencies
  • Vision impairment
  • Overmedication
  • Use of sedatives, tranquilizers, muscle relaxers, and antidepressants
  • Muscle weakness
  • Balance issues
  • Other conditions, including vertigo

Every fall is preventable if the senior citizen has adequate supervision when required. Many older adults in nursing homes require round-the-clock care and assistance when transferring from the bed to a wheelchair or wheelchair to a shower/toilet.

Breaking a hip in a fall could be catastrophic for the senior citizen if at least a significant health consequence or diminishes the elder’s quality of life. Nursing home staff must ensure that the resident under their care remains safe by following proper fall prevention protocols.

Property Owners Slip and Fall Liability

Property owners, store management, nursing homes, assisted living centers, and residential homeowners must maintain a safe environment for every resident, visitor, or invitee on the premises. Those responsible for the property must warn others of the dangerous condition or barricade a hazard until the area can be made safe.

Determining liability in a slip and fall case is the crucial element to receiving compensation for damages. Thousands of people are injured every year when slipping and falling on icy sidewalks, stairways, uneven floors, and potholes.

In many incidences, the property owner or management might be held legally liable if they knew or should have known of a hazardous condition and took no action to remedy the problem. Slip and fall injuries can happen in hotels, people’s homes, department stores, shopping malls, and other locations.

However, Resolving a compensation case requires that the plaintiff (injured party) prove to a claims adjuster or trial jury that the:

  1. The people in charge knew or should have known of the dangerous condition and took no action to correct the problem,
  2. Their negligence led to a hazardous situation,
  3. The hazard because of the plaintiff’s (injured party) injuries or damages,
  4. The plaintiff’s injuries or damages are real.

Liability cases are often based on common sense where the claims adjuster, juries, or judges determine if someone’s negligence harmed the plaintiff. The verdict is often based on specific circumstances, including:

  • How long did those in charge know the hazard existed or should have known, and when did they take steps to fix the problem?
  • Were the steps taken to remedy the problem reasonable and appropriate?
  • Did the victim’s carelessness or reckless actions contribute to causing the accident?
  • The claims adjuster or jury might decide that the victim was partially responsible for their injuries, decreasing the amount of compensation they receive for their damages.

Don’t Be a Statistic. Contact a Personal Injury Law Firm Today to Handle Your Slip and Fall Accident Case

Were you injured, or did you lose a loved one in a horrific slip-and-fall accident? Was the fall the result of someone else’s negligence?

Contact the premises liability attorneys at Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers at (888) 424-5757 (toll-free phone number) or contact form to schedule a free consultation today. Your personal injury lawyer accepts all personal injury cases and wrongful death lawsuits required until the case is resolved.

Resources: [1] National Safety Council, [2] Consumer Product Safety Commission, [3] National Institute on Aging, [4] OSHA, [5] Bureau of Labor Statistics, [6] American Trucking Association

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