Falling from Balconies
Why are so many people falling from balconies? Falls happen for any number of reasons, often the circumstances surrounding a fall from a balcony are never known because the victim was alone and the fall was unwitnessed, but more and more condos are installing amenities such as bar-b-que pits and hot tubs on balconies making it easier to climb onto and accidentally fall over the railing. Some railings are in disrepair or may be bent or otherwise damaged from a prior tenant, leaving a wider than usual opening for a young one to fit through.
Infants and children should never be left alone on a balcony, but accidents happen and mischievous children often find their way onto a balcony unsupervised.
Vacation should be a time to relax, soak up the sun, and spend quality time with your family and friends. For many Louisiana residents, this means hopping on I-10 and heading to Florida or Gulf Shores. Whether you are spending time alone, with your family, or with a group of friends, safety should always come first.
You finally arrive at your hotel or condo. The first thing you do is walk onto the balcony, check out the view and feel the warm air. If you have children, you probably move any patio furniture away from the railing and discuss with everyone the danger of leaning on the railing, looking over the sides and instruct the kids that they are absolutely prohibited from being out there alone. When you first see the view and recognize the height at which you are, safety is at the forefront of your mind. However, as the week progresses and relaxation (and libation) sets in, you become increasingly comfortable with the balcony. The furniture slowly moves closer to the railing, you peak over the side, you let the kids peak over the side, next thing you know, an accident happens. You may wake up to ask where’s Little Johnny (or Big Johnny) and never know how or why he fell off of the balcony, but that doesn’t mean that it was all his, or your, fault.
Louisiana has a reputation for enjoying life to its fullest, often with the assistance of alcohol. Alcohol consumption is usually ramped up during summer vacation. Often times the victim of a fall had been consuming alcohol, but this doesn’t necessarily mean that his consumption was the cause of his fall.
Many falls involve what Louisiana calls “comparative fault”. If you live in Louisiana but are injured in Mississippi, Alabama or Florida it is important you speak to a Louisiana attorney who will advise you of your rights. In Louisiana you are entitled to recover compensation for the percentage of fault of another person, ie: you may be injured through your own fault and the fault of another. For example, in terms of a balcony fall, you may have been leaning over the edge more than an ordinary person would, but at the same time, the railing may have been shorter than it should be-without having leaned too far the accident wouldn’t have happened, but at the same time, it also wouldn’t have happed without the railing being too short. Not every state follows the doctrine of comparative fault, which is why you should immediately seek the advice of a Louisiana lawyer.
At The Law Offices of Matt & Allen, we work with injured victims and their families every day. Our clients are in a tough situation where they deserve financial compensation, but they must fight against those at fault. If you or a loved one have been injured due to a fall off of a balcony, or any other vacation related injury, do not hesitate to contact us today to find out about your options moving forward.
What is Premises Liability?
When we enter a premises, whether it be a restaurant, store, hotel or condo, we expect that the premises is kept to a certain standard of care and safety. No one expects to be injured because the place they are staying on vacation is unsafe. When one is injured in this way, it is referred to a premises liability case.
Improper building maintenance or design is often what leads to the types of balcony or terrace falls mentioned earlier. Anything from a loose railing, to oversized gaps in the railing, damaged railings or what was stated earlier in this article objects that are permanently installed next to the railing and can easily lead to a fall.
Whether you or your loved one’s fall was due to one of these reasons or a reason that is unmentioned, you may be able to receive compensation for your damages. You do not need to suffer with high medical bills, time off work, and pain and suffering. Call The Law Offices of Matt & Allen today to speak with an experienced personal injury attorney about the details and options of your case.
Unfortunately for many who experience a fall from a balcony, the result is fatal. According to the Journal of Pediatric Surgery 100% of the children who fell from three stories or less survived and 50% mortality occurred between the fifth and sixth floors. In other words, a fall from the fifth or sixth floor of a hotel or condo will more likely than not result in death.
Although no one can put a price tag on your loved one’s life, filing a wrongful death lawsuit against those who are at fault for the accident can help cover funeral costs, pain and suffering, or any other finances that may incur due to this incident. If you have lost a loved one due to a balcony fall, do not feel alone. The team at The Law Offices of Matt & Allen want to help you through this difficult time.
Other Vacation Injuries
Falls are not the only common way that Louisianians get injured while on vacation. Other types of injuries due to other people’s negligence can include:
Safety should always be your first concern and main priority while traveling, especially if you have young children or if your group will be consuming a lot of alcohol.
Contact an attorney today
Contact the Louisiana attorneys at The Law Offices of Matt & Allen today to get started.