An uneven sidewalk, broken step or slippery surface could cause a New Jersey resident to trip and fall. Tripping accidents often involve injuries to the ankle. Three bones, the tibia, fibula and talus, meet at this joint that is supported by ligaments, tendons and cartilage. Damage to any of these body parts could result in a long recovery time of weeks or months depending on the extent of the injury.
Although a diagnosis of a sprain or strain might not sound very serious, the traumatized or stretched ligaments can cause serious pain and reduce the victim’s mobility. A person’s ability to walk comfortably could be impeded for months. Fractures to any of the bones in the ankle joint also result in pain and long recovery times. Severely broken bones could limit someone’s mobility for a lifetime. Tears to the ligaments, tendons or cartilage weaken the ankle’s structure. A victim normally has to deal with a prolonged period of pain during the slow process of healing.
During a slip or trip, a person could experience any combination of these injuries. An ankle rolling underneath the stress of a person’s weight could twist or hyperextend the joint. The natural tendency of people to step down hard when trying to save themselves from a fall often exacerbates the damage.
A person injured in a slip and fall because of a dangerous property condition may want to meet with an attorney to see what recourse might be available. Property owners are required by law to keep their premises safe for invitees and licensees, and they could be held financially responsible under the theory of premises liability if they fail to do so and someone is harmed as a result.