As home to more casinos than any other city on the Mississippi Gulf Coast, Biloxi is known to draw gamblers from across the country. In 2020, Mississippi’s casinos collectively reported earnings that shattered pre-pandemic revenue records as people rushed to the reopened entertainment venues. The Mississippi Gulf Coast consistently ranks in the top ten casino markets by revenue.
Gambling in a casino can be a great activity to enjoy with friends and family. But if you fall at a casino, you need to know what to do to protect yourself, your health, and your rights. Contacting a Biloxi casino injury lawyer who will accept and excel in the challenge of fighting these powerful entities is essential to making sure you receive fair treatment. Let’s take a look at how casino injuries occur and what should happen when they do.
What Injuries Happen at Casinos?
The soaring popularity of our state’s gambling industry may leave you wondering how safe Mississippi’s casinos really are. While COVID-19 has been a recent concern in these large, indoor venues for high volumes of people traveling across state lines, casinos have traditionally posed health hazards for other reasons as well. In addition to disease transmission, a casino can be the site of accidents related to food poisoning, fighting and assaults, overserved alcohol, shuttle bus transportation, exhaustion, smoke inhalation and lack of fresh air, and, most commonly, slip and fall accidents.
What Causes Injuries at Casinos?
The majority of accidents which occur on casino property are slip and fall accidents. Because the atmosphere of a casino is so prone to disorder, commotion, and easily-damaged property elements, casino managers and owners need to be even more vigilant in upkeep, control, prevention, and maintenance. It is the responsibility of the casino to make sure they have enough well-trained, capable employees on hand to maintain order and safety, clean up any spill or accident as soon as it occurs, and generally keep a safe environment for patrons.
The following facts about casinos can create a perfect storm of slip and fall accident hazards:
- Large, rowdy crowds make for disorderly and chaotic conditions.
- Thousands of employees onsite can lead to increased odds of carelessness or negligence.
- Unqualified or undertrained workers are sometimes on staff.
- Alcohol, food, and other beverages are frequently spilled on the floor.
- Patrons are at times overserved alcohol and become problematic to other guests.
- High-traffic restrooms become slippery when not maintained properly.
- Low lighting and densely-packed walkways make for increased likelihood of a fall.
- Flashing colored lights, loud noises, and excited patrons lead to distraction.
- Carpeting that is not regularly replaced easily becomes loose and torn.
- Elevators, escalators, stairs, and handrails can break and lead to injury.
- Slot machine chairs are frequently used and often cheaply made, thus prone to breaking.
What Kind of Injuries Happen in Casino Falls?
If you have been injured in a slip and fall accident on casino property, your first action should be to seek medical attention by a doctor of your own choosing, not medical personnel which may be assignment by the casino. Your second step should be to contact an experienced Biloxi, MS slip and fall lawyer who can get to work immediately on your claim as you put your own attention and focus on recovering from the injuries you sustained.
The following injuries are ones which most commonly occur in slip and fall accidents:
- Fractured vertebrae
- Cracked ribs
- Slipped or herniated discs
- Knee damage
- Sprained or broken ankles
- Hip fractures
- Soft tissue damage
- In severe cases, traumatic brain injuries (TBIs)
How Do Casino Owners Defend Themselves?
A casino never wants to pay money they think they may be able to avoid paying. This is especially true when that sum of money is substantial enough to cover the high medical costs a person may accrue while treating their injury. Here are some of the reasons casinos are often able to get out of compensating injured parties:
- Heavy Funding. As of 2021, in-house gambling is a $13.6 billion industry. You can be sure that casinos do everything in their considerable power to protect their assets and avoid paying the money they deem an unnecessary expense to those who have been hurt due to the casino’s negligence.
- Expert Legal Team. One investment casinos owners almost always make is in a team of skillful legal experts who are willing to defend casino ownership personnel with no question of their culpability in the accident that caused injury.
- Strictly-Controlled Evidence. When management learns that you have fallen and been hurt on casino property, it is typical procedure for a security team to be immediately dispatched to assess the situation and collect evidence. Witnesses will be interviewed, photographs taken, and information amassed in a database safeguarded by casino administration.
- Video Footage. Casinos contain hundreds of interspersed cameras recording every moment that passes on and around the property. From the time you step foot on casino ground, your every movement is being documented. Anything you may have done leading up to the moment of your fall can be construed as evidence in an attempt to prove your fault in the accident. Worse yet, it is up to the discretion of the casino legal team to decide if the evidence in the video makes them look bad and should be deleted.
How Can a Lawyer Help You?
If you have been injured in a slip and fall accident in a casino, it is critical that you contact your lawyer right away. As we’ve seen, casino owners are extremely shrewd when it comes to protecting themselves against paying out the compensation they legally owe to those who have been injured due to negligence. It’s no surprise that many lawyers, even highly competent ones, are hesitant or flat-out refuse to take on cases against these corporate giants.
As a Biloxi, MS casino injury lawyer, one of the tasks I am continually faced with is sending protection letters to casinos to preserve evidence. Casinos should never be allowed to delete video footage or bury other evidence. If you hire me, it is my job as your legal representative to make sure that the casino doesn’t sweep any proof of their culpability under the rug. A good attorney knows that they need to work swiftly and intelligently to prevent the casino from covering their tracks and fashioning the evidence to indicate that you were responsible for your own injury.
What Can You Do to Help Your Claim?
The best way to protect yourself is to be preventative. For example, casino patrons are known to wear loose, casual footwear like flip-flops. Wearing proper footwear in a casino can help prevent a fall from happening in the first place. But there are so many elements in play in a casino atmosphere that are outside of your control. In the case that you are hurt, there are specific actions that you as the plaintiff can take to help your lawyer help your case. The following recommendations can make for a smooth process toward achieving the maximum compensation to which you are entitled under the law.
- Get the names and contact information of any witnesses of the fall.
- Take pictures and videos and keep them for documentation.
- Seek medical help immediately and follow your doctor’s instructions to the letter.
- Do not return to work until your physician has advised you to do so.
- Refrain from posting about your case on social media.
- Do not talk to people outside of your legal team while your personal injury claim is open.
- Confer with your attorney immediately and continually after sustaining an injury and beginning the claims process. Do not under any circumstances sign or accept a settlement offer without first discussing with your legal advocate.
Contact a Biloxi, MS Casino Injury Lawyer Who Can Take on a Challenge
People who have been injured in a Mississippi casino have the right to know that they are being properly represented. When I meet with a client for an initial consultation, I often receive very insightful questions about what I can do to help recover damages. I know my clients hire me because they trust my ability as a casino injury lawyer to handle these tough cases. When it comes to slip and fall accidents that happen in casinos, I can safely say that I have most likely handled more cases than anyone else in the state of Mississippi. If you need a lawyer who can take on a challenge and win, reach out to my office in Biloxi, MS for a free consultation.