Taking the stairs offers many health benefits like weight loss, the release of endorphins as well as minimizing the risk of heart disease, diabetes, and stroke. However, one misstep could cause severe damage and even death if you are not careful. Unfortunately, stair injuries are all too common in the United States. Over 1 million people visit the emergency room each year due to stair-related injuries and every six minutes a child under the age of 5 falls down the stairs.
This is why it is important to learn about ways to make the stairs safer in your home, general safety tips when you are taking stairs outside your home and what legal action is available if you injure yourself in a fall.
Are The Stairs Safe In Your House?
Evenly-spaced stairs along with smaller steps will help reduce your risk of a fall. When steps are uneven, a person is more likely to misstep, and smaller stairs are more accessible for children and the elderly to navigate. In addition to the spacing of stairs, carpet and traction strips can also increase the safety of your steps and reduce the likelihood of a fall. Finally, you will want to make sure your stairs have a sturdy railing to grip when traveling between floors in your home. Not only will these simple home improvement tips protect you against injuries, it will also protect your family members and guests.
How Can I Stay Safe When Taking The Public Stairs?
Whether the stairs you are using are indoors or outdoors, you need to be aware of your movements. Make sure the steps you are using are well-lit so you can see where your next step is and take it slow. If you are rushing, you are more likely to fall. In the winter, the steps you may need to use could be covered in ice or snow. When this happens, you will want to consider taking an alternate route.
Additionally, when using any stairs you will want to avoid carrying anything that blocks your vision and have a free hand to use the railing.
What Should I Do If I Injure Myself Outside My Home?
Accidents happen, and it is likely you are going to fall on the stairs at some point in your life possibly injuring yourself. If you fall outside your home, follow these steps:
- If you are able to, try and pick yourself up off the floor. When you are getting up from a fall attempt to roll to your side, then sit up slowly. Remain in the sitting position for a few minutes (when needed) and then use the railing or have someone assist you to a standing position. If you are hurt and unable to pick yourself up off the floor, call for help.
- If you are seriously injured, seek medical assistance immediately. Otherwise, contact your primary care physician for any minor injuries. Any person who experiences trauma to the head from a fall should seek medical help.
When a fall on someone else’s property was caused by their neglect, you may have grounds for legal action. A spill caused by the owner, slippery surfaces, damaged steps or a landlord’s decision to leave a stair broken would likely make them legally responsible.
Have you injured yourself on a set of stairs? Contact us today. The experts at Elsner Law Firm are here to answer any questions you may have and discuss your legal options.