Think about how many times you have jogged up or down a set of stairs without thinking twice. We all do it. And, most of the time, it all works out. It doesn’t even register as a risky event.
However, all it takes is one minor defect to cause a serious trip and fall. Your injuries could be extensive. On the stairs, you’re deceptively high above the ground. Though it may not be a straight drop for ten feet or so, the draw of gravity is relentless, and falling on the stairs can lead to massive injuries — especially when you strike your head on the way down.
So, how do you know if the stairs are excessively dangerous? Here are a few things you should watch out for:
- The stairs are creaking, indicating that the treads are loose or there are gaps between the treads and the risers.
- The banister is loose, missing or broken. If a handrail moves at all when you touch it, there’s a serious risk.
- The posts at the top and bottom of the stairs move. It could mean they’re coming loose from the nails that attach them to the staircase, and they work just a bit looser every time someone touches them.
- The stairs are excessively worn down where people have been walking on them for decades.
- The stair treads are not all at the same height, which is a major trip hazard.
- The stairs have been damaged by water, pets, or any other outside factors.
If you do trip and fall on a set of stairs, you need to know if you have a right to financial compensation for your medical bills and other costs. You shouldn’t have to suffer financially in addition to your other injuries.