If a fall occurs that is caused by a slippery floor, once the entity responsible for maintaining the surface on which the incident occurred has been established, the most important action on the part of the injured party is to gather sufficient evidence in the case. It is the injured party, as the person claiming compensation or damages in connection with the accident, who has the burden of proving that an accident occurred as a result of an improperly maintained surface, such as a slippery floor, in which the injured party suffered an injury or damage, such as a broken arm. Any evidence of the circumstances of the entire incident is important for further investigation.
First of all, if an accident has occurred, it is necessary to find out whether the place where the incident occurred was covered by a camera monitoring system that was working and turned on at the time of the incident. In this situation, the owner of such monitoring should be approached as soon as possible with a request to provide footage of the day and time of the incident. Such a recording will be the most reliable evidence, as it will show the entire event in real time. It is also important to take the necessary photos or video recordings yourself at the scene of the incident, which may contribute to determining the cause of the accident, such as a photo of a wet or improperly secured floor (depending on where and under what circumstances the fall occurred). It is important that these photos highlight any irregularities on the surface that contributed to the fall.
Another very important thing after a fall is to look around to identify direct witnesses to the incident and ask them for their contact information, as their testimony in the process of seeking compensation or redress for the injury suffered can often prove crucial. Witnesses to the incident can also be asked to submit a written statement describing the circumstances of the accident
In the absence of witnesses or recordings and photographs of the incident, it is also necessary to notify a first-party person other than the parties immediately after the accident, so that the circumstance that the incident occurred at all is substantiated and confirmed in any court proceedings by such person as a witness. Such a person could be, for example, an employee of the store where the fall occurred or a mall security guard, a municipal police officer - all depending on where the incident occurred.
If you have suffered an injury as a result of an accident that forced you to visit a doctor or hospital, it is essential to collect all medical documentation, which is important evidence that is particularly relevant to determining the amount of any compensation or damages. This documentation will confirm what costs, such as rehabilitation, were incurred by the injured party. Also important are any receipts and invoices for medications that the injured person had to take, travel to medical facilities, e.g. for rehabilitation or visits to doctors.
Because the burden of proof is on the injured party when claiming compensation for a fall on a slippery floor, it is extremely important to gather as much evidence as possible in the form of photographs, testimony of direct witnesses to the incident, CCTV footage, medical records, etc.
A good addition to the evidentiary documentation, can be an inspection of the technical condition of the floor on which the incident occurred. This type of inspection is performed by comparing the floor's non-slip parameters with the guidelines of the construction law. One of the few companies performing this type of testing is Smartfloor.
If you need more detailed information about collecting evidence in a fall on a slippery floor, questions or concerns, however, we encourage you to contact an attorney or legal counsel of your choice.