Watch for Black Ice!
Winter weather is prime time for slip and fall accidents. But what happens when you cannot see the patch of ice on the sidewalk in front of you? Icy patches on roads and sidewalks that are invisible or difficult to see are referred to as “black ice.”
Slip and fall accidents result in very serious injuries, especially for older individuals who are prone to more severe accidents. What injuries can you expect after a fall on black ice? They can include the following:
- Severe brain and head injuries
- Broken bone and fractures
- Severe bruising
- Open wounds and contusions
- Hip injuries
The Center for Disease Control said in the year 2000 that falling accidents caused more fractures injuries and open wounds than any other type of injury. Older persons are getting hurt in greater numbers. In 1988, 230,000 older adults were injured in slip and fall accidents. By 1996 the number had jumped to 340,000. According to projections by the CDC, the number of seniors hurt in slip and fall accidents will be around 500,000 by the year 2040.
A Michigan case involving a black ice slip and fall injury demonstrates the complexities of slip and fall accidents. In short, the court ruled that while the icy patch was invisible, the fact that the state is known for harsh winters made the danger of the ice “open and obvious” and thus dismissed the plaintiff’s claim.
Don’t Delay Contacting an Attorney
Clearly, slip and fall accidents require the expertise of an attorney well versed in the law. Have you fallen on a patch of ice that you were not aware of? Contact an attorney who has experience handling slip and fall injury cases for help defining your rights. You can also download your copy of Don’t Wreck Your Injury Claim for more useful information about your rights.