Usually, when we think about major causes of accident-related injury, we think about things like car accidents or motorcycle collisions. Some people might think about recreational accidents, such as injuries suffered while rock climbing or horseback riding. All of these things can (and all too often do) result in serious injury, but relatively common, even everyday events can also lead to serious injury and accidental death. These include such events as slips, trips, and falls. It is entirely possible for even a strong, hard-working young person to stumble, land on an elbow or a knee, and cause a fracture or a dislocation that results in time off work, lost wages, medical expenses, and severe pain and suffering. As many as 25% of all worker’s compensation reports are filed over injuries resulting from a slip and a fall.
Slips and falls can be particularly dangerous for the elderly. They account for nearly three-quarters of fatal accidents and severe accidental injury among the elderly across the United States. As many as one out of three US citizens over the age of 65 will experience some form of fall-related injury every year, but fewer than 1 in 6 will actually talk to their doctor about the possibility of fall-related injuries. All too often, the possibility goes largely unrecognized.
- Lacerations: A cut can happen on any sharp edge or protrusion; it doesn’t even need to be a particularly sharp object to begin with. The forces involved in the weight of an adult human falling prone are surprising, and they’re augmented under certain conditions – such as the flailing of an arm in an attempt to catch oneself before hitting the floor. A laceration will involve multiple stitches, injections to stave off tetanus, and the possibility of an infection – resulting in additional pain and recovery time.
- Fractures: A joint can be dislocated, or a bone can be fractured, if one falls upon a part of the body that isn’t accustomed to bearing that kind of weight on a regular basis. The sudden force can result in anything from a hairline fracture to a full-on break, particularly among the elderly. This is one of the leading causes of severe fall-related injuries in the United States; it can put a person out of commission for weeks, regardless of their health otherwise.
- Head Injuries: Arguably, there is no such thing as a “minor” head injury. Any blunt force that’s strong enough to leave an abrasion or to draw blood should be investigated as to the possibility of a concussion. Among the elderly in particular, for whom traumatic fall-related brain injury is a leading cause of death in America today, severe head injuries can have profound implications. Even with the very best of scenarios, a 100% recovery is not particularly likely; brain injuries often result in diminished capacity in some way, be it a physical or a mental reduction. They may change someone’s personality, or have other psychological effects.
Maybe you were injured after slipping on a wet floor in a restaurant; perhaps somebody didn’t think it was serious enough to put out a warning sign. Perhaps you fell while on the job at work, and fractured an ankle or a knee, resulting in weeks of recuperation and extensive medical bills. Whatever the case, you need to call our law offices in Grant’s Pass, OR as soon as you can. We can help you to determine the sort of compensation to which you are entitled, whether it be lost wages or medical bills or pain and suffering – and then we can go to bat to help you get it.