Property owners in California and across the country have a duty to protect the public’s safety both inside and outside their buildings. Those who are negligent risk facing premises liability lawsuits. Routine inspections for safety risks and promptly addressing dangers can help to avoid claims for damages by injured invitees.

Some of the most common injuries involve unsafe walking surfaces. Slips, trips and falls can cause life-changing injuries. Although wetness is often the cause of slip-and-fall incidents, polished stone and high-gloss tiles are equally dangerous. When it comes to trip hazards, the list of risks is endless, including potholes or other damage in parking lots, elevation changes and uneven surfaces. Poorly lit areas and debris could cause additional hazards.

Another significant risk to mitigate involves fire safety. Clearly marked emergency exits are crucial, and tenants, customers and visitors must be able to quickly locate escape routes. Emergency exit signs must be illuminated, and egress routes must be unimpeded, clear and conspicuous. Most importantly, emergency exit doors must be unlocked. Also included in the property owner’s responsibilities is protection against theft and assault.

Victims of injuries suffered while shopping or visiting public places may have questions about their legal rights and the viability of a lawsuit. An experienced California personal injury attorney can assess the strengths and weaknesses of the case. Proving negligence could be a complicated task. Legal counsel with experience in premises liability and seeking damage recovery for those injured in public areas might be the best person to deal with it. Typically, damages to document for adjudication by the court include medical expenses, lost income, pain and suffering and more.