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Holiday Accidents | LegalMatch Law Library

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What are Common Holiday Accidents?

During the winter holiday season, certain personal injuries can occur that might not happen very frequently throughout the year.  

Common holiday accidents are those that typically occur more frequently during the holiday season rather any other type. For example, one common holiday accident is falling while putting up holiday decorations.

The accident can happen while falling from the roof of a home or decorating a Christmas tree, and can lead to serious injuries. Other common holiday accidents and injuries can include:  

  • Burns caused by cooking
  • Getting sick because of a food-borne illness
  • Back injuries from slipping on icy patches while walking to someone's front door
  • Trip and falls over extension cords attached to lights and other decorations, resulting in sprains or broken bones
  • Motor vehicle accidents caused by bad weather or bad driving conditions
  • Alcohol-related injuries
  • Various other types of injuries

Can Holiday Accidents Be Fatal?

Many people die each year because of holiday accidents. For instance, a common fatal holiday accident is called a candle-started fire. This type of fire occurs when someone or a person’s pet knocks over a candle at a residence and an accidental fire breaks out. These can also cause major property damage in addition to fatal injuries.

Another common and deadly type of holiday accident is a fire caused by space heaters. Sometimes, people leave portable spaces heaters on while they leave their home to go traveling over the holidays.

In other instances, flammable materials such as wrapping paper may be left around the heaters while people are at home. A fire from a space heater can destroy valuable property and even kill people. 

Can I Sue for a Holiday Accident?

Whether a person can sue or not truly depends on who caused the accident. Many personal injury cases that happen around the holidays are the result of negligence. In such cases, it may be possible to sue based on a negligence theory of law.

For example, in some cases a person who attends a holiday dinner party and becomes ill because of a food-borne illness can sue the host. This can happen if the host negligently prepared the food in a way that deviated from how a person exercising normal precautions, such as refrigerating ingredients or baking an item to a specific temperature, would have prepared it. Another example is where a person knowingly serves food that is contaminated or expired.

Should I Talk to a Lawyer about a Holiday Injury I Sustained?

Holiday accidents can result in a personal injury claim. You may need to talk to a  personal injury lawyer about your legal options if you have been injured as a result of holiday activities or while visiting others during the holidays. Your attorney can advise you on how to proceed and can represent you in court as well.

Photo of page author Jose Rivera

, LegalMatch Legal Writer

Last Modified: 06-06-2018 12:01 AM PDT

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