Slip and fall accidents are major causes of injuries in Canada, especially during the winter months. Dangerous conditions like icy weather can make necessary activities like going to the grocery store hazardous. Thankfully, property owners are legally required to meet specific property safety and maintenance standards to mitigate slip and fall risks any time of year. When these laws are ignored, the resulting dangerous premises raises the risk of a slip and fall accident. The resulting injuries can be devastating.
Like any other dangerous premises, medical facilities such as hospitals pose a risk to visitors and employees when building codes are ignored or basic maintenance and cleaning is neglected. Hospitals can also be held liable for these mistakes. It should be the mission of every hospital to create a hazard-free environment where patients, employees, and members of the general public can expect to feel safe. If you experienced a slip and fall in a hospital, learn what legal options are available when a place of healing becomes a place of hurt.
Causes of Hospital Slip and Fall Accidents
An experienced personal injury lawyer can help you understand whether the hospital is liable for your accident and what options are available to you. The following hazards can be present in hospital settings:
- Narrow or steep stairwells
- Freshly mopped or waxed floors
- Uncleaned spills
- Icy or snowy sidewalks
- Uncleared walkways
- Exposed wires
- Uneven surfaces
- Broken concrete
- Poor lighting
- Construction hazards
Better Understand Hospital Slip and Falls
“Slip and fall” is a term used to describe a type of personal injury that occurs as the result of an accident on someone else’s property. A hospital slip and fall is just one of several types of personal injuries. However, an accident in a hospital that at first appears to be a simple slip and fall could actually involve other types of personal injury.
British Columbia’s Occupier’s Liability Act establishes that owners and/or operators of a property must take steps to ensure it is safe for others to occupy. When a property’s occupants are harmed or injured as a result of unsafe conditions, it can be considered to be dangerous premises. Owners and operators of dangerous premises can be held legally liable for the hazardous conditions that led to an injury.
If your accident occurred while receiving medical care, your case may qualify for medical negligence. Medical negligence is a type of personal injury that involves harm by medical personnel who fail to maintain acceptable standards of care with acts of recklessness, carelessness, or neglect while delivering patient care.
Defective products can also create unsafe hospital conditions when a malfunctioning piece of equipment or poorly designed product creates a hazard. Broken gurneys, poorly designed hospital slippers, and leaky cleaning products are just a few of the ways a defective product could be involved in a hospital slip and fall.