Frequently Asked Questions

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  • Protecting Yourself Against Injuries in Large Crowds

    Anytime large groups of people are assembled together, whether inside auditoriums or sports arenas or outdoors at festivals or public street events, there is the chance for conditions that make personal injuries more likely to occur. Space may be at a premium, unexpected accidents can occur, and fights can break out, causing pandemonium and chaos. Knowing what to do and how to handle yourself in a crowd can help to ensure your safety. Follow these tips to protect yourself and others who are with you. 

    If you do become injured, you may be entitled to financial compensation for any losses your injuries have caused. Contact Shapiro, Appleton & Washburn to meet with one of our Virginia personal injury attorneys to find out what legal options you may have to pursue for damages.

    Preparing Yourself for Crowded Events

    Pushing, shoving, and being crushed between objects or under people are all concerns in large crowds, as are slips, trips and falls and injuries due to dangerous conditions such as fires, electrical problems, adverse weather conditions, and acts of violence by others. Places where these types of issues may occur include sporting events, concerts, street festivals, and social or political protests.

    Consider the circumstances surrounding the event you are attending in advance, the venue at which it will be held, and the ways you can prevent being caught up in the types of situations that make accidents and injuries more likely to happen. Common types of injuries suffered at these events include:

    • Soft tissue injuries due to slips and falls
    • Broken bones and dislocated joints
    • Severe cuts, lacerations, and puncture wounds
    • Serious burns and heat stroke or dehydration
    • Crushing injuries, causing damage to limbs and body organs
    • Back and neck injuries, such as slipped or herniated discs
    • Head injuries, including concussion and traumatic brain injuries

    What to Do at an Event

    Facility owners and event coordinators or hosts do have an obligation to ensure the safety of guests and attendees and should take the necessary precautions to prevent accidents and injuries from occurring. For example, many organizations advise their event planners to take the following actions:

    • Identify the type of crowd the event is likely to attract, what their needs might be and the specific behaviors which could be an issue
    • Have easily identifiable volunteers and security to assist with crowd control and any problems that do arise
    • Make sure the facility is large enough and has the necessary accommodations
    • Make sure to have an evacuation plan in place

    Protect yourself when you go to an event by making note of the exits and entrances and avoid places that are roped off or otherwise prohibited. If it is an outdoor event, make sure to take plenty of water and sunscreen. If you get an anxious feeling and notice the behavior of the crowd changing, play it safe, and move to a location where you can make a quick escape.

    Contact a Virginia Injury Attorney

    If you or a family member has been injured at an event where there were large crowds, contact a seasoned Virginia premises liability attorney to discuss what legal recourse you may have. Even if it is not entirely clear who is the at-fault party, a Va. injury attorney will be able to determine which party or parties are liable. At Shapiro, Appleton & Washburn, our injury attorneys have successfully represented numerous accident victims and have the legal expertise to handle these complex cases with positive results. Call 800-752-0042 for a free case evaluation.

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  • What are the most common injuries suffered by elevator or escalator accident victims?

    • Asphyxiation
    • Brain injuries
    • Bruises
    • Burns
    • Crush injuries
    • Cuts
    • Electric shock
    • Fracture bones
    • Head injuries
    • Laceration
    • Loss of limbs
    • Spinal cord injuries

  • What are the most common causes of elevator and escalator accidents?

    • Improper installation, maintenance, or inspection
    • Equipment defects, such as faulty wiring, doors, malfunction of pully systems, mechanical breakdowns
    • Poor or inadequate fall protection

  • How often do elevator or escalator accidents happen?

    According to national statistics, more than 17,000 people are injured each year in elevator or escalator accidents. Approximately 40 victims die each year. Half of these fatalities are employees who install, maintain, and repair these devices.

  • What type of damages can a victim of an escalator or elevator accident collect?

    A victim of this type of accident can pursue damages for:

    • Diagnostic testing (X-rays, MRIs, scans, etc)
    • Emergency room care
    • Physician appointments
    • Medical devices, such as crutches, braces, wheelchairs, etc.
    • Physical therapy
    • Occupational therapy
    • Treatment for emotional injuries, such as PTSD, anxiety, etc.
    • Lost income if unable to work while recovering
    • Reimbursement for home help and/or childcare
    • Pain and suffering

  • What are common causes of escalator or elevator accidents?

    Some of the more frequent causes we see here at our personal injury firm include the following:

    • Bad wiring
    • Disregard of appropriate repairs
    • Failure to perform regular inspections
    • Inadequate emergency call system
    • Maintenance by unqualified workers
    • Malfunction of the mechanical system
    • Malfunctioning buttons
    • Malfunctioning or broken door
    • Misalignment of the mechanical system
    • Overcrowding
    • Overweight load
    • Poor design

  • Who is liable for an escalator or elevator accident?

    When a victim is injured in an escalator or elevator accident, there are several potential parties who could be liable, including the property owner, the maintenance company who is responsible for the escalator or elevator, or the manufacturing company. There could be even more than one liable party.

  • What are common injuries that occur in slip and fall accidents?

    • Concussions
    • Fractured bones
    • Fractured vertebrae
    • Herniated discs
    • Soft tissue injuries

  • What are slip and fall accidents?

    “Slip and fall” is a term used for a personal injury case in which a person slips or trips and is injured on someone else's property. They are also known as premises liability cases. Slip and fall accidents are usually sudden and can have a long-term or permanent impact on a victim’s life. Injuries can be traumatic and severe, and often result in a slow and painful recovery period.

  • What is the burden of proof in an inadequate security premise liability claim case?

    The burden of proof is on the victim and their personal injury attorney to proof owner liability. The victim needs to prove that the business owner had a responsibility to take reasonable preventable measures to keep any visitors to their property and that the owner failed to live up to that responsibility.