Nevada is one of the most popular tourist states in the U.S. thanks to Las Vegas, and millions of people visit Las Vegas’ casinos every year. Slip and fall accidents may at first sound like minor issues, but the reality is that these incidents account for roughly one million emergency room visits every year, and some victims suffer severe injuries from slip and fall incidents. Nevada state law sets clear guidelines for wet floor signs that all business owners must follow to avoid absorbing liability for slip and fall injuries.
Business Owners’ Responsibilities in Nevada
All businesses have a duty of care to keep their guests and patrons safe from foreseeable injuries. A freshly-mopped floor is an obvious slip and fall hazard, so the business must ensure whoever mops the floor places a clearly visible “wet floor” sign in the area so guests know to use extra caution or avoid the area.
Wet floor signs are essentially part of a property owner’s duty to warn in Nevada. If a property owner knows of a safety issue on his or her property, he or she must take appropriate steps to warn lawful visitors of the issue, so they do not suffer injuries. Placing a wet floor sign in an open, clearly visible location near a hazard would satisfy the duty to warn as long as it is reasonably visible from all approachable angles.
What Happens If There Is No Wet Floor Sign?
If a custodian cleans a floor in a Nevada business and neglects to place a wet floor sign or other type of clearly visible warning near the area, this would be a breach of the business’s duty to warn guests of a known hazard. If a lawful visitor, guest, or customer suffers a slip and fall injury when no wet floor sign was present in the area, the business would be liable for the victim’s damages under premises liability law.
Damages for a Slip and Fall Injury
When a Nevada business neglects to warn lawful visitors and/or customers of a known safety issue like a wet floor, the business absorbs liability for the resulting damages. A slip and fall could simply cause a few minor cuts and bruises, but it is also possible for a slip and fall to cause a bone fracture, traumatic brain injury, or even a spinal cord injury. When such injuries occur, the property owner responsible for warning the victim of the hazard is responsible for the victim’s medical expenses, lost income from time missed at work due to the injury, and the victim’s pain and suffering.
When a slip and fall incident results in a permanent disability, the victim’s compensation could be quite substantial. The justice system in the U.S. allows plaintiffs in civil cases to secure compensation for physical pain and emotional suffering caused by another party’s negligence.
Comparative Negligence in Nevada Slip and Fall Lawsuits
Nevada follows a comparative negligence law, meaning that if a plaintiff bears any responsibility for causing his or her claimed damages, the plaintiff may lose a portion of the case award or settlement to reflect his or her fault. For example, if a hotel guest was running through the halls and did not heed a wet floor sign and suffered a slip and fall, it would be unlikely that the hotel would absorb liability since the hotel satisfied the duty to warn and the guest did not heed the warning. However, if the sign was not placed appropriately and the victim was running inappropriately, the victim would still have grounds for a lawsuit since the hotel did not satisfy the duty to warn.
If you recently suffered an injury from a slip and fall incident at a Nevada business, speak with a personal injury attorney as soon as possible to determine your best options for legal recourse.