Falls kill a surprising number of people every year. According to the National Safety Council, as many as 42,000 individuals died in slip and fall accidents in 2020. Falls can be especially dangerous for older individuals and those in poor health. For this population, falls are a leading cause of death, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Slip and fall dangers are everywhere – in the home, the workplace, and community businesses and establishments. One place where slip and fall dangers are abundant but may not be easily recognized is in parking lots.
Parking Lot Slip and Fall Dangers Abound
Since parking lots are simply large paved areas where traffic proceeds at a slow pace or is stationary, you may consider parking lots free from dangers. Nothing could be further from the truth, however. Any one of the following can lead to a parking lot slip and fall:
Because it is exposed to the elements, parking lot slip and fall hazards can accumulate water, snow, ice, and spills from other substances. Like the floors of businesses, parking lots need to be inspected regularly and cleared of these materials.
Not all businesses have the resources to do this, however, and may simply hope these will disappear on their own.
Newly Paved Surfaces
Some business owners may try to stay on top of parking lot maintenance and may repave their parking lots as they become older. While there are benefits to doing so, newly paved surfaces may not provide the traction that an older surface might provide. These surfaces are especially prone to becoming slippery during inclement weather resulting in a parking lot slip and fall.
Finally, a parking lot that is older may have uneven sections where one part of the parking lot is higher or lower than the surrounding areas. These areas are not always easily visible until you are right on top of them. These, too, can cause a slip and fall if you are not careful with your footing.
Staying Safe While in Parking Lots
Vigilance is key to staying safe in a parking lot and avoiding a parking lot slip and fall. You should:
- Remain aware of your surroundings at all times
- Wear footwear with tread that is appropriate for the weather
- Avoid talking on your phone or other distractions while walking
- Pay particular attention to where you are walking and what is in front of you
- Look out for other traffic and walk in designated walking areas, if available
Be especially cautious in parking lots that are poorly lit as this can conceal any dangers present.
Do I Have a Parking Lot Slip and Fall Case?
If you slipped and fell while walking through a company’s parking lot, you may have a premises liability case against the business owner. If that business owner did not properly maintain their parking lot or warn you of dangers, you might be able to recover compensation for your injuries.
Lowcountry Law, LLC is experienced in helping personal injury victims across South Carolina recover monetary damages. Let us discuss your case and rights with you as part of our free, no-obligation case evaluation.