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Holiday hazards to be aware of this season

This time of year can be quite hectic for people all across Illinois. There is often a lot going on, from holiday shopping to road trips to visit loved ones. Stress and anxiety levels can already be at an all-time high during this season; a serious injury or accident could only make matters worse.

Unfortunately, there are a number of holiday hazards that put people in danger. In this post, we will explore some common risks people may be confronted with in the coming weeks. 

Many holiday hazards lead to personal injuries and can fall into a few different categories for legal claims: product liability, premises liability and automobile accidents.

A product liability claim may be filed if the use of a dangerous or defective product results in damages. During the holidays, these products may include:

  • Faulty Christmas lights
  • Tainted food
  • Defective children's toys

A premises liability claim may be an option for people injured on property that has been poorly maintained or neglected. Holiday-specific risks include:

  • Visitors slipping on an icy walkway
  • Falling down stairs in a poorly lit stairwell
  • Inadequate security at shopping malls 
  • Being bitten by someone's dog while taking a walk to see neighborhood Christmas lights

Holiday hazards don't go away when you get in your car. In fact, many motor vehicle accidents happen during this time of year due to:

  • Drunk drivers
  • Distracted drivers
  • Reckless drivers

Accidents stemming from these situations can be grounds to take legal action. People may not want to think about lawsuits or compensation following an accident, especially when there is already so much else going on. However, these types of injuries can require hospitalization, ongoing medical treatment, missed work and other types of damages that could be physically, emotionally and financially devastating at any time of year.

Being hurt as a result of the dangerous or negligent behaviors of others can have a serious impact on victims and their families, and this impact can be felt long after gifts have been opened and radio stations have stopped playing holiday music. We want to readers to be aware of these hazards in an attempt to avoid them. But if an accident does occur, we also want you to know that you can seek relief and compensation by speaking with an attorney.

Source: STV Aberdeen, "Tis the season to be cautious: Christmas 'elf' and safety," Laura Piper, Dec. 7, 2014

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