For many people, concerns about winter weather and the risks it brings start with the impact it has on road safety. There is no question that thousands of people every year get into otherwise preventable collisions because they don’t slow down and adjust their driving habits to reflect current weather conditions. Getting into a crash caused by a snowstorm, however, is far from the only risk that winter weather brings for people in Colorado.
The snow and ice accumulating in parking lots and on sidewalks during winter storms can make otherwise safe spaces slippery and dangerous. Your boots may not have enough grip to keep you upright, especially in cases with black ice.
Even the inside of buildings can become riskier during and after winter storms, as the snow and ice melting off of people’s boots can result in dangerous puddles on the slick floors of a store. Wet, slippery surfaces dramatically increase your risk for a slip-and-fall accident, which can produce far more serious injuries than people seem to realize.
It’s common for major slips to produce broken bones
Broken bones, also known as fractures, can cause severe pain and leave someone unable to work their job or even care for themselves with basic tasks such as grooming or dressing. According to a data analysis by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention looking at the consequences of significant, reported slip-and-fall accidents, broken bones are a leading injury after a fall, and they impact people over the age of 65 more significantly than younger people.
Roughly 20% of older adults who experience a slip-and-fall incident will break a bone. The older someone is when they break a bone, the more dramatic the impact that broken bone could have on their overall health. Adults over the age of 65 are at increased risk for debilitating medical experiences related to fractures, including an inability to leave their bed or a secondary infection that threatens their life.
Even those who don’t have severe consequences directly from the fall may develop a fear of falls that prevents them from living their life freely and happily. It is also possible for someone to strike their head when they fall, leading to traumatic brain injuries, which can also be permanently debilitating.
Premises liability claims can offset the expense of a slip-and-fall
People who own or rent their living space usually carry a liability insurance policy to protect them, and the same is true of businesses that open their facilities to the public. Liability insurance policies protect those who own or maintain facilities from the financial liability that an injury can cause.
Filing a claim helps the victim by giving them access to compensation for lost wages, medical costs and property damage that occurred because of the slip-and-fall accident. After all, a person shouldn’t wind up saddled by thousands of dollars in medical costs because a company wouldn’t clear their parking lot or mop the entrance to the business.