Property owners should make sure that their properties are safe. In fact, they are legally obligated to do so. This is a legal concept called premises liability, and failure to comply to it may result into lawsuits, especially if there are accidents and injuries.
The website of Zavodnick, Zavodnick & Lasky says that those who have been injured on such instances may take legal action, such as trying to get compensation from the property owners.
One of the most overlooked premises liability cases is porch collapse. This occurs when a porch gives in, often resulting into injuries such as brain trauma, skull damage, facial disfigurement, broken bones, particularly in the arms and legs, and spinal cord injuries, that may even be severe enough to cause paralyses.
Porches collapse because of many reasons, but these reasons share the same idea – somebody has been negligent, and it’s most likely the property owner. Below are some of the most common reasons.
- Overloading – Porches are designed to withstand a specific maximum weight, and going over that limit may result into a collapse. Porch collapse because of overloading generally occurs because of two things – the property owner deliberately goes over the weight limit or he or she is not aware of the weight limit. Either way, he or she has become negligent.
- Poor maintenance – Just like everything else, porches are supposed to be maintained so they are in top condition. This is important because if the porch is not in top condition, it may be prone to defects and wear and tear, particularly on the parts that are vital for their support.
- Poor support – Speaking of support, it is known as a cause of porch collapse as well. No matter how well-maintained your porch is, if its beams, ledger boards, and joint hangers are not properly installed or not strong enough, it may be prone to collapsing, especially if it holds significant weight.
- Poor foundation – Buildings are complicated things, and that is why you should hire professionals on constructing them. Even foundations can affect porches. Good building foundations may complement the porch’s maximum weight, and bad building foundations present its own problems.
Workplace accidents can be devastating for victims and their families. At best, the accident may result in minor discomfort and time off work. At worst, a workplace accident can cause debilitating injuries or death, leaving the worker and relatives without a source of income to support them and a host of medical bills.
Workers who suffer accidental injuries or occupational illnesses are eligible to receive workers’ compensation from their employer. Such compensation pays for medical bills and supports the workers if their ability to work has been hampered by the injury.
A significant number of workplace accidents result in injuries like slips, trips, and falls. A report from the Liberty Mutual Workplace Safety Index showed that slips, trips, and falls were the second leading cause of workplace injury in 2005. Slips and falls, which can cause serious injuries ranging from broken bones and lacerations to brain injuries, account for nearly $6 billion in direct costs for employers and workers annually, according to the website of The Williams Kherkher Law Firm.
Surprisingly, a majority of fall-related injuries occur when workers fall from same-level surfaces. The risk of falling is greatly increased when employers do not take proper care of their facilities and fail to take sufficient safety precautions to protect their workers. The Occupational Safety & Health Organization publishes regulations that require workplaces to be orderly and organized and have safe, non-slip surfaces.
According to the website of Pohl & Berk, LLP, slips, trips, and falls, along with other workplace accidents, can be prevented with the proper materials and supervision. If you have been injured in a workplace accident, you should seek immediate medical attention, then determine if you are eligible for workers’ compensation to defray the cost of your injury. If you are not eligible for workers’ comp, then a lawsuit might be your best bet of recuperating your losses.