Every year, a third of people aged over 65 years old in the UK suffer slips, trips and falls. Sometimes it is impossible to avoid a fall when elderly, but experts estimate that around a third of falls are preventable. If you’ve suffered a fall and it wasn’t your fault, you may be able to claim slip, trip or fall compensation.
Slips, trips or falls in the elderly: the facts and figures
According to statistics from the Department of Health, a third of people over 65 fall every year and of these, approximately a third will fall again within the next 12 months. Falls are the most common cause of fractures among elderly people and they cost the NHS around £5 billion per year. Sixty two per cent of older people who die as a result of an accident have had a fall and half of patients who have fractured their hip after falling never regain total function. More than 95 per cent of hip fractures are caused by falling.
According to the East of England Ambulance Service NHS Trust, falls account for 20 per cent of annual ambulance emergency calls.
How to reduce the risk of falls in public places for elderly people
Shop and supermarket managers, hospital owners and proprietors of public places are required to comply with stringent health and safety policies to try and prevent accidents in public places. Measures that may help to reduce the risk of falls in a public place include:
- Keeping stairways clear
- Placing warning signs around uneven surfaces, changes in the level of flooring and spillages
- Ensuring that slippery surfaces are wiped clean as quickly as possible
- Providing a lift for those that have trouble with stairs
- Using doormats for people to dry and wipe their feet
- Ensuring that flooring is in good condition
- Ensuring that passageways and stairways are well lit
- Installing hand rails in public toilets
- Ensuring that banisters are in good working order
What to do if you have fallen
If you have fallen in a public place, the incident occurred within the last 3 years and it wasn’t your fault, contact the Accident Advice Helpline. The company was launched in 2000 to provide a reliable, convenient legal service for clients. The firm employs an expert team with experience in handling no win, no fee personal injury claims, road traffic accident claims, work accident claims and slip, trip or fall compensation. They are also supported by TV consumer rights champion, Esther Rantzen.