Potential Injury Hazards During the Holiday Season
The holiday season is a time for family, friends, and fun. But it's also a time when liability risks can be at their highest. Whether you’re traveling to a new city or just shopping for family and friends, it’s important to understand the potential injury-causing hazards that may arise. Here are five premises liability hazards to keep in mind this holiday season:
1. Unkempt Lawns or Sidewalks
When a property is not well-maintained, it can be a premises liability hazard. This is especially true during the holiday season when people are traveling and may not be as aware of their surroundings. Unkempt lawns and sidewalks can cause trips and falls, leading to serious injuries. Property owners should take steps to ensure that their property is well-maintained at all times, especially during the busy holiday season.
2. Poorly Maintained Facilities
While you’re out shopping for holiday gifts, be aware of the potential hazards in the parking lot and around the store. If the property owner doesn’t maintain the premises well, it could result in a slip/trip and fall accident. Make sure to watch out for puddles, spills, cracked flooring, and ice.
Additionally, if you're attending any holiday gatherings at restaurants or another facility, be on the lookout for other potential hazards. Frayed wires, water hazards, and torn carpet/uneven flooring can all contribute to serious injury.
3. Inadequate Lighting
Inadequate lighting can be a serious hazard both inside and outside buildings. Inadequate lighting inside a building can lead to trips and falls, especially in areas such as stairways and hallways. Poorly lit parking lots and sidewalks can also be dangerous, making visitors vulnerable to tripping hazards and violent actions due to negligent security, depending on the area. When visiting a new city or business, be aware of the lighting conditions and take extra caution in areas that are not well-lit.
4. Fire Hazards
Fire hazards are one of the leading causes of premises liability accidents. Not only can a fire cause significant damage to property but it can also lead to serious injuries for those in the area. If a property owner doesn’t take steps to address fire hazards, they can be held liable for any injuries that occur as a result.
Some common fire hazards include clutter blocking exits, improperly stored flammable materials, defective wiring or appliances, faulty smoke detectors or fire extinguishers, and poorly maintained heating systems.
5. Holiday Decorations
While holiday decorations can be a festive and bright addition to any home or business, they can also pose a serious threat to your safety. If decorations are not installed and maintained properly, they can lead to fires, trips, falls, and other injuries.
As a visitor or guest in a space with holiday decorations, be mindful of open flames and wires on the floor. Many of these hazards are easily avoidable but can lead to serious injury if overlooked. Be especially cautious when entering or exiting spaces, as many decorations are often placed near doorways. Keeping a close eye on children and pets is also helpful, as they are often more prone to injuries caused by decor mishaps. If you notice any hazardous decorations, report them to the property owner or manager immediately.
Where to Turn to Protect Your Future
If you’re injured during the holiday season, our team at Bretz Injury Law can help ensure that you receive compensation to recover from your accident. Injuries can happen in a second, but our team aims to protect your future by considering the long-term implications. Get started with a free consultation by calling (620) 234-8880.