Many people who care for elderly parents or other loved ones know the slip and fall risks older adults face on staircases. To reduce their loved ones’ risks of being injured, many install reinforced handrails, add anti-slip tape to stairs, and situate their loved ones on the first floors of their homes so that they do not have to use the stairs.
These are all great steps to take to reduce an elderly individual’s risk of falling and being injured, but what many homeowners and caretakers do not realize is that individuals of all ages and fitness levels can be injured as the result of a staircase slip or fall.
A recent study published in the American Journal of Emergency Medicine detailed data on staircase injuries in the United States from 1990 to 2012.
Groups at the Highest Risk of Being Injured on Stairs
According to the study, the groups most at risk of being injured in staircase slip and falls include older adults, young children and women. Adults over 85 and children under three years old are at the greatest risk of being injured in staircase slip and falls. The researchers could not determine why women have a higher risk of being injured in staircase accidents than men, but posited that the reason could be that women spend more time in the home than men and use the stairs more regularly while caring for children and performing household chores.
Stair Injury Facts and Statistics
A few key facts from the data studied include:
Between 1990 and 2012, just under 25 million patients were treated for staircase-related injuries in American emergency rooms
Between 1990 and 1996, staircase injury rates fell 13 percent. From 1996 to 2012, they increased by 24 percent
60 percent of staircase accidents happened in the patients’ homes
62 percent of staircase injury victims were women
A staircase injury happens approximately every 30 seconds
About 3,000 staircase injuries happen each day
Approximately 66 percent of staircase injury victims were between 11 and 60 years old
23 percent of victims reported that they were injured when they slipped, slid, misstepped, or tripped
6 percent of victims were admitted to the hospital for fractures or concussions, while 94 percent were treated and left the hospital the same day
Ways to Make Home Staircases Safer
Homeowners can make their staircases safer by making a few adjustments. One safety adjustment to make is to ensure that the handrail is secure and that it permits stair users to grip it with their whole hand, rather than just their fingers. Another is to keep stair surfaces even and to increase horizontal stepping surfaces.
Delaware Slip and Fall Lawyers at McCann & Wall, LLC Help Injured Fall Victims Seek Compensation
A slip and fall on a staircase can lead to high medical bills, days or weeks out of work, and additional expenses like the need for a mobility aid or psychological counseling to overcome the trauma of an injury. If you or a loved one suffered an injury as the result of a stairway slip and fall, complete our online contact form or call 302-304-8047 to schedule a free consultation with a Delaware slip and fall lawyer at McCann & Wall, LLC.