While anyone can potentially suffer from a trip and fall accident (also known as a slip and fall accident), the elderly are especially vulnerable to these types of accidents. Not only are they more likely to experience this type of accident, but when they do, they are more likely to suffer a severe injury. But what is it that makes the elderly so vulnerable to a trip and fall accident?
What is a Trip and Fall Accident?
Trip and fall accidents are essentially what they sound like: accidents caused by people tripping or slipping, and suffering an injury when they fall on the ground. Millions of these accidents happen every year across the United States, but only a relatively small number of them result in injuries that require medical attention. However, when they do result in a severe injury, they can be as dangerous as any other type of accident.
What Can Cause Trip and Fall Accidents?
Trip and fall accidents can happen at any time, anywhere, and for a variety of possible reasons. Some of the most common causes of trip and fall accidents include:
- Damaged or broken flooring
- Spilled food or liquid
- Snow, ice, or rain accumulation
- Cluttered floors, such as from construction projects
- Damaged carpeting or rugs
- Unstable handrails or guardrails
- Lack of adequate lighting
Why Do the Elderly Suffer More Trip and Fall Accidents?
The reason that elderly people have a greater tendency to trip and fall is because of the health issues that many people suffer when they get older. Certain neurological conditions can affect a person’s balance, causing them to trip or slip more often than others. In addition, neuromuscular issues can make it much harder for someone to catch themselves when they fall, which allows other people to avoid the worst consequences of a fall.
What Happens When Elderly People Trip and Fall?
When elderly people take a fall, it tends to be far more dangerous than it is for younger people. Medical conditions like osteoporosis make it much more likely for elderly people to suffer a bone fracture, and arthritis and other joint issues can increase the risk of dislocations. In addition, many older people are on blood thinners to deal with clotting issues, which means they bleed more easily and heal more slowly from their injuries. These factors combined can make an otherwise minor fall into a major medical event, one that may even become fatal if the injured person does not receive prompt medical attention.
If you or a loved one have been injured due to someone else’s negligence, you should seek out the personal injury lawyers at Zlotolow & Associates. Our seasoned New York personal injury attorneys bring more than two decades of trial experience to your case. We serve all five boroughs of New York City, as well as Nassau and Suffolk County. Our aggressive personal injury attorneys always demand maximum compensation. We have helped thousands of clients recover through settlements and courtroom verdicts.