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Difference Between Slip & Fall and Trip & Fall Accidents

Posted in Slip and Fall Accidents on September 15, 2021

Falling accidents are some of the most common causes of injury in the United States. These types of accidents impact tens of thousands of people annually.

Some believe that “slip and fall” accidents and “trip and fall” accidents are the same. This is a misconception. Although these two types of falling accidents share some similarities, they are distinct legal causes of action.

This guide will examine the differences between “slip and fall” and “trip and fall” accidents. No matter what type of falling accident you have experienced, it is important to discuss your incident with a skilled personal injury lawyer.

Understanding Slip and Fall Accidents

Slip and fall accidents happen when a person loses their balance and falls because of an unreasonably slick or slippery surface.

Some of the most common examples of unsafe surfaces include:

  • A hard surface that has been cleaned or waxed recently
  • Hard floors that are wet from a leak or spill
  • Solid flooring with built-up condensation
  • Carpets that offer inadequate amounts of grip or traction

These accidents are common at grocery stores, shopping malls, restaurants, and other businesses. However, not every fall on a slick surface will warrant a personal injury claim.

Slip and fall accidents typically occur when people overestimate the amount of traction that a surface will provide. In this type of falling accident, the victim’s feet usually continue to move forward faster than the rest of their body. As a result, the person falls backward.

Slip and fall accidents tend to result in the following injuries:

  • Sprained wrists or ankles
  • Dislocated shoulders
  • Traumatic brain injury
  • Other head injuries
  • Nerve or spinal damage

If you have sustained a slip and fall accident, contact a legal professional right away.

Understanding Trip and Fall Accidents

This type of falling accident happens when someone trips over an obstruction in their path. When their foot catches on the unseen object, they lose their balance and fall.

Some typical causes of trip and fall accidents include:

  • Differential elevation between a sidewalk and street
  • Uneven stones on a walking path or sidewalk
  • Door jambs of an unexpected height
  • Objects left in a walkway

Usually, these accidents occur when the victim is unable to adjust their center of gravity to maintain balance.

Trip and fall incidents often result in the person’s foot being caught on the obstruction. This leads them to fall forward. They may attempt to catch themselves with their hands or elbows.

These mishaps often result in predictable types of injuries. Some examples include:

  • Limb fractures and broken bones
  • Neck injuries
  • Foot and ankle damage
  • Lacerations, cuts, and abrasions

They can also cause broken or sprained fingers and thumbs.

What to Do After a Fall Accident

All types of falling accidents can be dangerous. In fact, nearly 40,000 people were fatally wounded in 2019 as the result of falling accidents in the U.S.

Slip and fall and trip and fall accidents can happen anywhere, including:

  • A workplace
  • A private residence
  • A restaurant or other business
  • Public spaces like sidewalks and parks

If you have been injured as the result of a falling accident, make sure to seek medical treatment immediately. Reporting these accidents to the relevant property owner is also crucial.

When a falling accident is the result of negligence, the victim has the right to seek financial damages for the losses that they sustain. Consulting with an accomplished personal injury attorney will provide the best chance of securing a positive outcome in a falling accident case.

To learn more, call one of our convenient locations nearest you for assistance.

New York City law office at (212) 564-2800,
Brooklyn law office at (718) 802-1600.

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