Every property owner has a responsibility to take reasonable measures to keep their premises safe. This rule applies to property owners, no matter whether one’s talking about a landlord, a store’s proprietor or someone else. It also applies to stairwells.
Inadequate maintenance can result in a property owner facing a personal injury claim filed by the person who suffered injuries in an incident. You may find it informative to learn more about the top three reasons individuals endure slip and fall incidents while using the stairs.
1. Poor lighting
One of the leading reasons premises liability cases are filed is due to issues with inadequate lighting. Stairwell users must be able to see how many stairs lie in front of them, whether anyone or anything is on them and their condition if they’re going to potentially avoid an injury.
While poor lighting increases a person’s risk of slipping and falling down the stairs, a simple enhancement is an inexpensive and quick way to improve it. All property owners should make it part to invest in additional lighting in these areas and also part of their routine to check for and replace burned-out bulbs.
2. Missing or poorly installed handrails
Building codes generally require publicly accessible buildings with stairwells to have handrails of a certain height. The absence of them or ones that are lower than code may leave individuals vulnerable to slipping and falling down the stairs.
There are also instances in which handrails may be present yet may not be capable of bearing the weight of an adult. They may also be loose from years of wear and tear, leading to a slip and fall incident.
3. Worn or defective building materials
Another leading reason for slip and fall injuries on stairs is a lack of upkeep. Building materials tend to deteriorate over time. Chips in tiles, loose wooden boards, frayed carpet or vinyl flooring that has started to peel back can all put visitors at risk of losing their footing and tumbling in a fall downstairs.
If you get hurt at no fault of your own on stairs, then you may have a valid premises liability claim. Learn more about your legal rights and options as soon as practical.