If you are a paying guest at a Maryland hotel, you expect certain things, a clean room, courteous service, and a safe environment. Unfortunately, this is not always the case. People are injured while staying at hotels while in their rooms, in public areas, or on the surrounding grounds and parking lots. Below, our Baltimore hotel injury attorney offers some advice on what to do if you are hurt while a guest at a hotel.
Common Injuries in Maryland Hotels
If you are traveling on business, vacation, or for any other reason, you anticipate a certain level of service from the hotel you choose. You do not expect to experience an injury while enjoying the accommodations provided. However, injures do occur. Some common causes of accidents and injuries in Maryland hotels include the following.
Slip and Fall Accidents
Slip and fall accidents are more common than you think. People suffer broken bones, torn ligaments, and head injuries from accidents caused by worn carpets, defective staircases, icy walkways and pavements, wet floors, and a variety of other dangerous conditions. Often, the negligence of a hotel employee creates a situation where a hotel guest loses their balance and falls.
Swimming Pool Accidents
Swimming pools present a hazard to all guests. Not all hotels in Maryland are required to have a lifeguard present, so swimmers assume a certain known risk. However, this does not relieve the Maryland hotel of liability. The areas surrounding a pool, such as the changing room, must be kept safe. Additionally, the hotel must post adequate warnings. The hotel must ensure that the pool and jacuzzi are thoroughly cleaned and maintained. If not, a guest could contract an infection or other sickness.
Hotel Food Service Injuries
Hotels that provide food services, either through on-site restaurants or room service, have to maintain a high standard of safety regarding the storage and preparation of the food served. If a kitchen is kept in an unsanitary condition, or employees do not practice proper hygiene, a Maryland hotel could be held liable if a guest experienced any type of food poising or sickness.
Hotel Furniture Injuries
Maintaining and replacing hotel furniture could be a costly expense. When a Maryland hotel allows older or broken furniture to remain in service, it presents an unreasonable hazard to its guests. A collapsed chair could result in serious back injuries or other bodily damage.
Steps to Take if You Are Injured at a Maryland Hotel
Prevailing in a personal injury lawsuit arising from an injury in a Maryland hotel often hinges on the evidence available to establish negligence on the defendant’s part. Connecting your injury to the hotel is vital if you want to recover for any damages you incurred.
Get Medical Attention
Your first priority after experiencing an injury should be to seek medical attention. If the injury is severe, have a hotel manager call 911 or transport you to the nearest emergency room or urgent care center. Delaying or refusing medical treatment could undermine your personal injury claim. When a doctor treats you, be clear and detailed about where your injury occurred and how it happened.
Report the Accident
If your injury does not require immediate attention, then there are some steps you should take if you are hurt while a guest at a hotel in Maryland. First, you want to report the incident to the hotel’s management. Be sure that they are aware of what caused your injury. You should write down the manager’s name and contact information. In addition to the manager’s information, you should request the contact information for the hotel’s insurance provider. Do not forget to get a copy of the incident or accident report.
Talk to Witnesses
Eyewitness testimony is often crucial in a Baltimore personal injury claim. If anyone saw what occurred, you need to get their names and contact information, including email addresses and phone numbers. While family and friends could provide statements, an independent witness’s account typically carries more weight with an insurance company or jury.
As the old saying goes, a picture is worth a thousand words. Use a smartphone or other device to take photographs and videos of the accident site. If you fell down a set of broken stairs, take pictures of them. You can also record the witnesses’ statements if they permit you. Photos will not only provide a graphic depiction of the hazardous condition; they will also help refresh a witness’s memory if they have to testify at a trial several months after the incident. Be sure to timestamp any photos or videos with the date and time to show they were taken contemporaneously with the accident.
To maximize your compensation, you will be required to prove the damages you incurred. Be sure to save receipts for any medical expenses or associated costs, such as transportation, parking, medication, bandages, or any other health-related bills. Additionally, you will want to keep track of how the injury affects your life financially, including any lost income.
Contact Our Maryland Hotel Accident Attorney for a Free Consultation
If you suffered a serious injury while staying at a Maryland hotel, you should not be responsible for all your medical costs or related expenses. Our law office has over three decades of assisting injured individuals in maximizing their compensation awards. Often, an insurance company will offer a settlement amount that is far less than you deserve. With the representation of our Maryland personal injury attorney, you will be in a more powerful position to recover fully for your injuries. Call Rice, Murtha & Psoras at (410) 694-7291 to schedule a free appointment to review the facts of your case.