Studies show the majority of fall accidents happen on the same level. The remainders of falls are from a height such as from a ladder or down a flight of stairs.

Same level falls are usually classified as slips or trips. Slips occur when there is too little available friction or traction between a walking surface and the bottom of a shoe. Factors contributing to slip accidents may include wet or contaminated surfaces, loose or unanchored rugs or mats, varying amounts of traction along a walking surface, sloped surfaces or inadequate surface texture.

Trip accidents are caused by the sudden halt of the motion of the support base which usually results in the body pitching forward. Common causes are obstructed views, poor lighting, clutter, wrinkled carpets or mats and unexpected changes in level. Stairways may cause trip accidents, usually when the pedestrian is ascending, due to non-uniformity of the stair treads.

Another type of fall is the misstep. A misstep occurs when a person steps onto what they perceive to be a same level surface, only to discover it is an irregular or sloped surface. An example would be stepping from a stairway onto the floor only to find out that there was one more step. The usual causes are similar to those for trip accidents.

Our engineering staff is experienced at scene documentation and data collection. We utilize laser measuring equipment to accurately document the condition of walking surfaces which may have contributed to a fall accident and compare them to safety standards and building code requirements. We also use specialized equipment to measure the coefficient of friction and illumination levels of walking surfaces.

Please contact Engineering Forensics Group at 865-281-0068 to discuss your case with one of our experienced professional engineers.


2908-J Tazewell Pike, Knoxville TN 37918   -   Phone: 865-281-0068   -   Fax: 865-281-0022   -   www.efgforensics.com