In the hustle and bustle of the hotel industry, employees and guests alike face a unique set of risks that can lead to serious injuries. Whether you’re a diligent housekeeper, a busy maintenance worker, or a guest looking for a relaxing stay, the potential for accidents is ever-present. Please continue reading to learn more about hotel injuries in the U.S. and how our Jefferson County personal injury lawyers can help if you’ve been harmed in a hotel accident.

Injury Statistics in the United States

Unintentional injuries were the fourth leading cause of death in the United States in 2015, accounting for 5.4% of all deaths. In 2014, an estimated 136,053 people died from unintentional injuries, with the highest death rates among those aged 75 and older. Severe injuries such as head or spinal cord injuries, particularly brain trauma, can result in permanent physical and mental disability or even death. As of 2015, approximately 17,000 spinal cord injuries occurred annually, with around 30% of these cases requiring re-hospitalization each year.

Occupational Injury Statistics

The Bureau of Labor Statistics reported 5,190 fatal occupational injuries in the US in 2016, a 7% increase from the 4,836 reported in the previous year. This marked the third consecutive year of increased workplace injuries and the first time over 5,000 deaths were recorded since 2008. The rate of fatal and serious injuries rose to 3.6 per 100,000 full-time equivalent (FTE) workers from 3.4 in 2015, the highest rate since 2010. Additionally, 2.9 million non-fatal workplace injuries and illnesses were reported in the private sector in 2016, occurring at a rate of 2.9 cases per 100 FTE workers.

Hotel Industry Injuries

Workplace injuries are not limited to high-risk fields like construction and manufacturing. The hotel industry also experiences a significant number of injuries, with hotel employees sustaining higher injury rates than most other service workers. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, approximately 1 in every 1,000 hotel employees is injured on the job each year, with hotel industry accidents comprising nearly 2% of all private sector accidents. In 2011, 17,160 injuries were reported in hotels; this number fluctuated slightly in subsequent years, with 17,910 injuries reported in 2014.

Common Hotel Injuries

The most frequently reported injuries in the hotel industry include:

  • Sprains, strains, and tears (36%)
  • Pain (20%)
  • Cuts (9%)
  • Bruises (9%)

The most common causes of these injuries are:

  • Over-exertion (34%)
  • Slip, trip, and fall accidents (32%)
  • Contact with equipment (24%)

Housekeeper Injuries

Hotel and motel employees, particularly housekeepers, suffer more injuries than other service workers. The repetitive nature of their tasks can strain tendons, ligaments, and muscles. In most states, these employees are covered by workers’ compensation programs, providing benefits for medical bills and lost wages. Housekeepers face a high risk of musculoskeletal disorders due to the physical demands of their jobs, such as bending, stretching, and lifting heavy mattresses. Most injuries affect the back, shoulders, and arms, often requiring medical attention and pain medication.

Other injuries sustained by housekeepers include:

  • Acute trauma (sprains, strains, fractures, contusions, burns, lacerations)
  • Chemical exposure
  • Stress from various sources, including workload and harassment

Filing a Personal Injury Lawsuit

Hotel employees can file a workers’ compensation claim for job-related injuries, but claims are often denied. In such cases, employees can seek legal assistance to file a personal injury lawsuit against the hotel. An attorney can help secure approval for the workers’ compensation claim or pursue a civil suit to ensure fair compensation for injuries and other damages, such as lost income, pain, and suffering.

Guest Injuries

Hotel guests can also sustain injuries due to hotel negligence and may file personal injury lawsuits to seek compensation. Common hotel-related accidents include:

  • Slip and falls
  • Food poisoning
  • Elevator or escalator accidents
  • Swimming pool accidents
  • Parking lot car accidents
  • Acts of violence

Proving a Hotel’s Liability

To file a lawsuit against a hotel, you must prove the hotel’s duty of care, breach of duty, causation, and damages. Hotels owe basic duties of care to guests, including disclosing hazards, maintaining safety, protecting privacy, providing security, and avoiding discrimination. A breach of these duties, resulting in injury, can lead to liability. The injured party must show that the breach directly caused their injuries and resulted in compensable damages, such as medical bills, lost income, and pain and suffering.

Legal Assistance For Hotel Injuries

If you or a loved one has been injured in a hotel accident, either as a guest or an employee, seeking experienced legal assistance is crucial. Alabama Personal Injury Lawyers, LLC can help you file a personal injury lawsuit and ensure your rights are protected. Contact us at 205-855-2745 for a case review. We have a proven track record of successfully handling hotel accident cases and securing favorable outcomes for our clients.