I’ve had an accident in a public place – what are my rights?

if you have an accident in public

The last thing we expect is to be involved in an accident in a public place. However, they’re relatively common and can lead to severe injuries.

Perhaps you tripped and fell due to a faulty pavement, or you slipped on a wet surface that didn’t have the appropriate signage. You could be entitled to compensation if the accident wasn’t your fault.

This article will discuss what you should do if you’ve suffered an injury in a public place. 

What is considered a public place?

Public places refer to anywhere that the general public can access. You might find yourself in many different environments when out and about in public, and these may come with various hazards and risks. Public spaces may be owned or operated by a public or private institution and could include:

  • Shops, bars and restaurants
  • Parks and pavements
  • Cinemas or other leisure venues
  • Gyms and swimming pools
  • Art galleries, theatres or museums

You should be aware that if you have an accident in public, you’ll likely be able to qualify for compensation.

What should you do if you’re injured in public?

Seek medical attention

If you’ve sustained a severe injury, seeking medical attention should be your priority. Try to get help from a witness or call an ambulance. Sometimes, the initial shock can distract you from the severity of the injury, so you may require more treatment than you initially thought.

Seeing a doctor can also verify your injury. If you wish to claim compensation, having your accident on medical records can help build your case.

Take photographs

It’s essential to take photographs of the accident scene to show precisely what the area looked like when it occurred. If you can capture what caused the accident, such as a faulty pavement or exposure to a hazardous substance, this can help prove the reasoning behind your accident.

Try to gather as much evidence as possible. If there were any local businesses nearby, it could be worth asking if they have any CCTV footage of the incident to solidify your case.

Speak to witnesses

If witnesses were present at the scene, ensure they get their names and contact details. Witness statements can help to further prove your case, especially if they are clear, concise, and accurate.

You must obtain these details as soon as possible, as memories can quickly fade. Gathering their side of the story can provide critical evidence and help to win your case.

Write down what happened

Many months may pass before your case is considered, so it’s essential to write the details down as and when it happened. Include as much detail as possible, such as where the accident occurred, what caused the accident, and who was there. Even the finer details, such as the weather conditions and what you wore, could be crucial.

Record your losses

To ensure you receive the compensation you deserve, you should keep a record of any losses or expenses you have incurred as a direct result of the accident. Keep any receipts for travel expenses and medical costs, and ensure to prove your loss of earnings if applicable.

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