More than one million emergency room visits are caused by slip and fall accidents every year. California law mandates that all property owners (private or government) must keep their premises safe from foreseeable hazards. If property owners do not maintain safe conditions on their property and someone is injured as a result of their negligence, they may be held liable for a victim’s damages.
A property owner’s failure to fix a foreseeable hazard which causes a preventable injury is an act of negligence. All property owners in the city of Bakersfield have a legal responsibility to ensure that their premises are kept safe. Thousands of people are injured every year after slipping and falling as a result of hazardous conditions. Slip and falls are not the only kind of accidents covered under premises liability, but they are one of the most common. Many slip and fall accidents only cause minor injuries, but some incidents can cause serious complications.
In 2018, a Kern County jury awarded $16.2 million to William Kidd after he suffered a slip and fall accident at an El Pollo Loco restaurant in Bakersfield. Kidd’s injury was caused by negligence on behalf of restaurant management. Instead of devoting more time to properly clean the grills, workers began cleaning almost two hours before closing. This is dangerous because slippery grease can easily be tracked into the dining area and create hazardous conditions for customers.
A cook who was still wearing the wet work boots he had used to clean the grills unintentionally tracked grease into the dining area. Kidd then came out of the bathroom and slipped on a large patch of grease left behind by the cook, slamming his head on the ground, and seriously injuring his knee. Kidd suffered a brain bleed as a result of his slip and fall accident and underwent brain surgery. He must now deal with permanent brain damage and an increased likelihood of developing dementia later in life.