Slips trips and falls

BACKGROUND

This is a very specialised area of personal injury investigation and requires specialist knowledge and experience.

Personal injury claims involving slips, trips or falls are extremely common and the consequences can be severe; many result in broken bones. Slips, trips and falls are the single most common cause of major injuries at work and are responsible for half of all accidents to members of the public in workplace areas.

Although slips, trips or falls can occur on any surface used as a walkway, numerous specific areas are known to be responsible for unusually high accident rates. These include shopping centres, foyer areas and leisure centres, as well as traditionally high-risk areas such as workshops, kitchens and shower areas.

INVESTIGATION

Frequently characterised by lack of credible forensic evidence, slipping claims are often difficult to investigate. The large number of test methods available for the assessment of slipperiness and the proven inability of several popular test methods to generate reliable information, results in a high likelihood of reliance on inaccurate test data.

DR PAUL LEMON

In fact, as is explained by our slips and trips expert Paul Lemon, "The slip resistance of any material can be accurately measured provided that the correct techniques are used and, crucially, are used properly. The processes used are complex and only the most seasoned experts can reach robust and reliable conclusions".

Paul has vast experience in this specialised field, having led the Health & Safety Executive's slips and trips forensic team for over a decade and managing the HSE's two largest ever research projects into flooring and footwear slipperiness. He is also the co-author of the two authoritative documents used during slipperiness assessment; BS7976 and the UK Slip Resistance Group Guidelines.

Paul may be contacted at paul.lemon@hawkins.biz, or on 07500 772 674.

Personal injury claims involving slips, trips or falls are extremely common and the consequences can be severe; many result in broken bones

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