BLOG NUMBER 20.75
When dining at a fine restaurant or seeing your favorite musical at the theater, it is understandable that the lights would be dimmed to improve your experience. But lighting is probably not warranted in your business office, in parking areas, or along essential walkways. Dim light can be the cause of slips, trips, and falls year-round. These unfortunate incidents don’t require ice and snow, so you’ll want to make sure the lighting on your property is sufficient to prevent these potentially costly accidents.
Attorneys are well prepared to argue cases where injuries occur due to poorly lit streets, sidewalks, indoor hallways, flights of stairs, or other areas requiring additional light to navigate properly. Lack of safety provided by the property owners or management is the prevailing factor in these cases.
Ultimately, the responsibility is on you as the business owner to ensure the necessary safety elements are present, and a lack there of will easily frame you as the liable party in the case of a slip and fall accident. You may be considered negligent in these cases due to your property conditions.
If you are proven to be negligent in a slip and fall injury case, you risk being held liable for any pain, suffering, and medical bills accrued by the plaintiff. This liability can be an extremely costly one as the injuries most commonly associated with slip and fall cases vary widely by severity and cost. Slip, trip, and fall injuries may result in anything from superficial abrasions to fractures to more serious, long-term injuries like a traumatic brain injury. Although bone fractures are the most common injury resulting from slips and fall, traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) can have lifelong impacts on both quality of life and ability to earn a living. Falls are the cause of more than 25% of spinal cord injuries and are the leading cause of spinal cord injuries among those ages 65 and older.
Not only can these accidents have serious financial implications for your business but can have very long-lasting impacts on the patrons, pedestrians, and residents who interact with it. To ensure that everyone is safe, lighting is an important component of your property management to monitor. Make sure you are taking the necessary measures to ensure all areas are sufficiently lit for pedestrians, patrons, and/or residents on your property.
Here are some best practices to ensure you are monitoring your property’s lighting elements properly. First, establish a lightbulb changing routine. Poor lighting conditions are often caused by lightbulbs that burn out and simply need to be changed. This is the most preventable cause of poor lighting and can be easily monitored. Second, poor lighting can be due to the use of the wrong kinds of bulbs. Be sure to use light bulbs that are right for your light fixtures. Lastly, in dim outdoor areas, consider installing motion-sensor light fixtures. This is a fairly inexpensive way to ensure walkways and parking areas are safe even during the nighttime.
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