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CNA study reveals common cause of slip and falls

CNA Financial Corporation released a study analyzing the slip-and-fall liability claims that it received between January 1, 2010, and December 31, 2016. The authors noted several trends that may make business owners in Illinois and across the U.S. think twice about the safety of their own premises.

The majority of slip and falls occurred because the flooring had inadequate slip resistance. The amount of friction that a floor produces determines the dynamic coefficient of friction level, the minimum threshold of which is 0.42. The study revealed that 50 percent of surveyed sites did not meet this nationwide standard.

Entryways were the site of 40 percent of slip-and-fall accidents, followed by parking lots at 33 percent and sidewalks leading up to the entrance at 27 percent. Businesses in the retail and real estate fields were the most prone to accidents. Though injuries tended to be minor, there were exceptions with some suffering traumatic brain injuries.

For these reasons, business owners should carefully select their flooring for slip resistance and test them regularly under wet conditions. A tribometer can be used to measure dynamic coefficient of friction levels. Owners should make sure that cleaning agents are compatible with the floor type and used according to the manufacturers' instructions. They should also promote awareness of the risks that come with slippery flooring.

These are the things that a lawyer would check for when assessing a slip-and-fall claim. The victim may also be partly at fault, in which case the settlement that he or she might receive through an injury claim could be lowered due to contributory negligence. Once the evidence has been established, the lawyer might negotiate with the insurance provider. A successful settlement may cover things like medical expenses and pain and suffering.

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