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Doctor, Lawyer Talk Slip-and-Fall Injuries

SPRINGFIELD, Mo. -- Ice and snow on our pavement means more people are suffering slip and fall injuries.
SPRINGFIELD, Mo. -- Ice and snow on our pavement means more people are suffering slip and fall injuries.

"Since Thursday of last week, we've seen 71 cases of slip-and-falls," Dr. Scott Henke, of Mercy Hospital, said.

Henke said there's been a 20 percent increase in slip-and-fall injuries since our first winter blast hit last week.

"It ranges anywhere from hip fractures, to leg fractures and arm fractures, to just simple bumps on the head and bruises and contusions. So really the whole gamut," Henke said.

Henke's advice is simple.

"Be careful. Realize your environment. Stay inside if there's any question at all," Henke said.
 
Springfield attorney Craig Hosmer said he sees an increase in slip-and-fall cases during harsh weather, too.

"The general rule is that a property owner, if they know about a dangerous condition on their property, they have to take reasonable precautions to try to minimize that danger," Hosmer said.

What is reasonable action?

"Sometimes you can't necessarily remove all that snow or ice, but you can put a warning up too,"  Hosmer said.

He said all slip-and-fall cases, whether on private property or at a business are fact-specific. However, businesses sometimes carry a bigger burden.

"You owe a higher standard to someone you invited on your property," Hosmer said.

Hosmer said few cases are skewed in one direction entirely.

"Missouri has what they call 'comparative fault,' and the jury may say the person who fell is partly at fault as well."

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