Like most people, you typically walk around your home, outside, and a variety of businesses without slipping or tripping. Falling is rare enough that you hardly ever consider the mechanics of walking around, such as how your footwear interacts with a variety of surfaces such as tile, concrete, blacktop, gravel, cobblestone, and grass. It never feels necessary to consider the tread of your shoe or the amount of force and friction needed to carry you forward. Yet only one small change in a typically consistent variable, such as a liquid on the floor, may cause you to slip, fall, and get hurt.
Wet floor accidents unfortunately happen every day. When you are injured in such an incident, you need to ask yourself who is at fault. If you got hurt because an individual, business, or government body did not take care of an area like they should have, then you may be able to prove liability and receive compensation for your injuries.
However, premises liability claims can be complex. You need to work with the Wisconsin premises liability lawyers at Studinski Law, LLC to prove the other party was negligent and recover compensation. Call us at (715) 343-2850 for a free, initial consultation of your case.
Reasons Why Wet Floor Accidents Happen
Wet floor slip and fall accidents can arise for many reasons. In Wisconsin, it is common for people to track in water when it is raining and snowing outside. Businesses and apartment buildings often find themselves with very wet entryways. Wet floors may come about because an employee, customer, or pedestrian spilled something. Water at a restaurant or a broken jar of sauce at a grocery store both create a slippery surface. Flooring can also become dangerous because of wax, polish, or some other treatment. What may be intended to make a floor shine could be what causes someone to get hurt.
Because of these reasons, wet or slick floors are bound to happen. However, that does not mean they must lead to anyone getting hurt. Wet floor accidents occur because someone failed to:
- Thoroughly inspect or keep watch over their property
- Clean up a liquid when it was noticed or reported
- Put up adequate warnings about wet or slippery surfaces
- Put up adequate barriers to keep individuals away from slippery and dangerous areas
- Keep drains clear
- Take reasonable precautions like salting ice during the winter
- Apply a “non-skid” floor treatment when necessary
Injuries Wet Floor Accidents Commonly Cause
Wet floors, however they arise, lead to individuals slipping and falling, causes injuries such as:
- Broken bones, such as fractured wrists, arms, or hips
- Muscle strains and sprains
- Neck and back injuries
- Spinal cord injuries
- Skull fractures
- Concussions or more serious traumatic brain injuries (TBIs)
- Internal bleeding
Premises Liability: Who May be Liable for Wet Floor Accidents
When you are hurt in a wet floor accident, it is important to speak with an attorney about who may be responsible. Your lawyer will help you determine who is specifically at fault for the wet surface that led to the accident and which individual, business, or government entity is responsible for that person. In some situations, the person at fault for the wet floor will be liable. However, in many cases, that individual is an employee or agent of another party, and it is that party that is liable for your injuries. For instance, a grocery store clerk may have failed to put up a “slippery when wet” warning sign. Yet it is the grocery store, not its employee, that is liable.
Depending on your accident, the liable party may be:
- An individual property owner
- A business property owner
- A government property owner
- A residential or commercial tenant
An Attorney Will Help You Recover Compensation After a Wet Floor Accident
The legal basis for you to receive compensation when injured in a wet floor accident is known as premises liability. When you visit other people or business’s properties, they are responsible for keeping you safe in certain ways. While they could never guarantee your safety from others, these property owners, tenants, or managers are supposed to ensure that their premises do not cause you harm. It is their job to make sure it their property is free from hidden and dangerous defects that can lead to accidents like a slip and fall.
If these parties do not uphold their responsibility toward you and you wind up getting hurt, you need to call a lawyer right away. One of our Wisconsin premises liability attorneys can help determine if you have a claim for slipping on a wet floor. To determine the possibility of a claim, you have to do more than prove you were injured. You must prove the other party was in some way at fault. You must have evidence that their carelessness, recklessness, or intentional misconduct when it came to maintaining the property or preventing defects is what caused your accident.
In other words, you must prove:
- There was a dangerous defect on the property (the wet floor)
- The property owner or manager knew or reasonably should have known about the defect
- The property owner or manager did not correct, warn against, or block off the defect
- The defect caused an accident and your injuries
Once you establish all of these elements, you may request compensation that covers your economic and non-economic injuries. These will include all of your medical expenses and lost income. Your lawyer will help you fight for an appropriate amount to compensate you for your physical pain and mental suffering and the value of any disfigurement or disability. Depending on the circumstances, you can also pursue a financial recovery for your loss of enjoyment of life, loss of society and companionship, and the loss of a sexual relationship with your spouse.
Let Us Help You
After being injured in an accident on someone else’s property, it is important for you to learn about your rights and legal options. At Studinski Law, LLC, we will listen to your situation and explain how premises liability law applies. If we are confident that you may have a legal claim against the owner, tenant, or manager of a specific property, we will outline next steps.
While we cannot erase what happened to you or promise a perfect legal outcome after a wet floor accident, we are here to fight for you and the compensation you deserve. We will go up against insurers, large businesses, and government bodies to ensure you receive an appropriate financial recovery.