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What hazards do wet floors present to a property's visitors?

Like anywhere else in the country, inadequate maintenance at a Florida property can lead to an accident. The same goes for premises that need repair or have hazardous conditions. Among the simplest hazards that can cause serious injuries to workers and customers is a wet floor.

What are the most common types of accidents in most areas frequented by the public? Wet floors and other slippery surfaces are among the leading causes of accidents in stores and other properties. They can cause someone to slip and fall. It may be hard to image, but a simple wet floor can lead to severe injuries. According to some sources, wet surfaces are among the leading causes of personal injuries in the United States. Slip and fall accidents also lead all workers' compensation claims and premises liability claims. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration estimates that these accidents make up the majority of general industry accidents and account for 15 percent of all work-related deaths. More than 540,000 cases of slip-and-fall injuries require some hospitalization every year. In total, slip-and-fall accidents cost more than $11 billion every year.

Where do most slip-and-fall accidents occur? There does not seem to be one particular area where these accidents are most common. They can occur in restrooms, showering areas, food preparation areas, entryways and exits. The worst wet floor hazards occur with flooring made of marble, terrazzo and tile.

Keeping premises free from hazardous conditions is the responsibility of property owners. They should be mindful of dangerous floors in general, which includes wet floors and improperly waxed floors. If they fail to immediately address problems and someone slips and suffers an injury, a premises liability lawsuit is likely to be filed against the property owner and could lead to substantial compensation to the fall victim.

Source: The Green in Hygiene, "Slippery When Wet: The Hazards of Wet Floors," Accessed Nov. 27, 2014

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