Regular exercise is a great way to help prevent falls, the top cause of injuries for seniors. September marks the beginning of the fall season – the perfect time for the US Centers for Disease Control & Prevention and the National Council on Aging’s launch of the Falls Free Initiative, a joint project aimed at reducing fall injuries and deaths among America’s elderly. Consider these statistics: More than 10,000 Americans turn 65 every day, entering the age group for which falls are the leading cause of injury nationwide. Falls result in more than 2.5 million injuries treated in America’s emergency rooms annually, including more than 21,700 deaths and 734,000 hospitalizations. Fatal fall injuries claim an elder’s life every 20 minutes. America’s emergency rooms treat new fall injuries every 13 seconds. One of three older adults experiences one or more falls each year, yet less than half of senior fall victims tell their doctors. Total direct and indirect costs of fall-related injuries, including medical fees, lost wages, etc., was estimated at $34 billion in 2013. Experts say that figure could hit $67.7 billion by 2020. Tips to help elders avoid falls include reglar exercise to keep the body’s core and limbs strong; getting annual vision exams and updating prescribed eyewear; and outfitting homes with preventative features such as stair railings, tub and shower grab bars and added lighting. A fall can threaten an elder’s health, safety and independence and result in devastating economic and personal costs. If you or an elder you love suffer a fall caused by negligence on the part of another, such as a lack of adequate lighting, wet floor or trip hazard at a public facility, get medical treatment. Then, call 904-251-1111 to speak with an experienced slip and fall or premises liability attorney with Jacksonville’s Harrell and Harrell.