A slip and fall accident can cause injuries far beyond a bruised ego. Concussions, muscle strains, and broken bones are commonly sustained during a slip and fall. The body part that impacts the ground first is often the back. For that reason, slip and fall accidents frequently result in spinal injuries.
A damaged spinal cord is considered a catastrophic injury by medical professionals. When the spine is injured in a slip and fall accident, a victim may lose the use of their arms and legs and may even be rendered unable to speak or swallow. Injuries occurring within the thoracic spine can result in the loss of all lower body functioning, including the ability to walk and control bowels. Although some patients may regain limited strength in their limbs with intense and prolonged physical therapy, the road to recovery is long, painful, and costly.
To that end, the medical care required for a paraplegic can cost as much as $292,000 during the first year following a slip and fall accident. The expense of caring for a quadriplegic is exponentially higher. The University of Alabama National Spinal Cord Injury Statistical Center maintains that, between an initial hospitalization, treatment in a rehab facility, and permanent, round-the-clock nursing care, the family of a quadriplegic can expect to pay out as much as $1.35 million over the course of their lifetime.
The Duty of Property Owners
In light of these costs, victims should always seek financial relief in court if their slip and fall accident was caused by a negligent third party. Property owners are responsible for promptly clearing snow and ice from all walkways and entrances. Similarly, property owners must repair carpeting or other tripping hazards, particularly on or around stairs. Whenever a property owner is aware – or should be aware – of a slip and fall hazard, yet fails to take meaningful steps to minimize that risk, they act with negligence.
Although not all slip and fall accidents will result in paralysis, lesser injuries to the spine can still require surgery and/or a prolonged absence from work. A compressed or herniated disc can occur when a slip and fall victim strikes the ground with such force that the discs between the spinal vertebrae are compressed or slip out of place. Similarly, a whiplash injury of the neck can occur when a slip and fall victim strikes the ground with such force that their head is hyperextended and then snaps back quickly.
New Jersey Slip and Fall Lawyers at Eichen Crutchlow Zaslow, LLP Hold Negligent Property Owners Accountable
The costs associated with caring for a spinal injury can largely be recouped if the injury resulted from a slip and fall accident caused by a negligent third party. Contact the New Jersey slip and fall lawyers at Eichen Crutchlow Zaslow, LLP at 732-384-1331 or complete our online form today to learn how we can help. At our offices in Red Bank, Edison, and Toms River, New Jersey, we seek compensation on behalf of spinal injury patients throughout the surrounding areas.