Taking dangerous short cuts, wearing inappropriate shoes and rushing to your destination are all factors that can contribute to a dangerous fall. However, many slip-and-fall injuries are not the fault of the victim. Dangerous West Virginia property conditions may contribute to a fall that leaves someone with serious injuries.

What types of injuries can occur?

Slippery floors, cluttered walkways, uneven surfaces and other fixable conditions can cause someone to suffer more than just a bump or bruise. Elderly shoppers or those with disabilities can end up with broken bones, pulled muscles or sprained ligaments if they take a hard fall. While these may not be life-threatening injuries, they can still be painful and result in financial burdens resulting from emergency room visits, medication, lost wages and more. Some injuries may even require surgery or physical therapy.

Perhaps the most serious injuries possible in a fall are spinal cord and brain injuries. Falls are the leading cause of traumatic brain injuries in certain age groups, and they can leave a victim with debilitating symptoms requiring years of medical treatment. Spinal injuries can range from ruptured discs to paralyzing spinal cord damage. Both spine and brain injuries often lead to further health complications.

What responsibilities do property owners have?

According to West Virginia law, property owners have a duty to provide a safe environment for all visitors. When slip-and-fall accidents occur due to the negligence of a property owner, those who suffer injuries may have legal recourse to receive compensation. Speaking with a West Virginia attorney can provide guidance for the most appropriate steps to take when holding a negligent property owner accountable.