Here at the Compensation Experts, we frequently hear from people who are injured as a result of defective and uneven pavements and roads. While the majority of these injuries are bruises and sprains, some people, especially the vulnerable and elderly sustain painful breaks, fractures and head injuries which can be life-altering.
Claims such as these are by and large defended by the local authorities, so it is imperative that either you or someone on your behalf carries out a few simple tasks at the soonest opportunity after the fall has happened. By carrying these out you will be in a far stronger position with regards to a compensation claim.
You will need to photograph the following:
1. The surrounding location
Take photographs of the street and surrounding shops, properties and landmarks in the area in which the incident took place. Take pictures of road signs and make a note of the surrounding addresses.
2. The defect
Document the defect in relation to other objects such as trees, the kerb, a street corner or anything else. Then take some photographs of the defect from roughly three metres away. Next, you will need some close-up photographs of the defect ideally with rulers in the picture (one in a horizontal position, the other in a vertical) and record the measurements (length breadth and depth) of the defect if possible. Failing that, placing some large coins in the picture to give a sense of perspective.
When possible, ask witnesses at the scene of the accident for their names and contact details as their evidence could significantly strengthen your case. Other people who regularly use the same street might vouch for the length of time the defect has been there, any other previous accidents and whether or not the defect had been reported to the council.
By carrying out these tasks you are building up your case and greatly increasing the likelihood and perhaps the size of your compensation. That money can then go some way to helping you recover from your injury, covering the costs and any lost earnings as a result.