Riser height on stairs was twice the limit, suit says

By Kelly Holleran | Oct 30, 2012


A woman has filed suit against the owners of the Alton property she was renting when she allegedly fell on a stair leading to her home.

Rebecca Prothro claims she was living at a property at 736 Central Ave. in Alton on April 7, 2011, when she fell on concrete steps outside her home.

“On the side of the rental property is a concrete porch that leads to the back of the premises, consisting of two steps, the first step down having a riser height of 12 inches high, and the next one having a height of 6 inches,” the suit filed Oct. 22 in Madison County Circuit Court states. “Applicable codes require stair riser heights to be between 4 inches minimum and 7 inches maximum. This area in question posed an unreasonable risk to persons walking down the steps, including the fact that the step was approximately 2 times the height of an acceptable and safe riser height.”

Because of the height of the step, Prothro fell while descending it, according to the suit.

In turn, she sustained severe left knee and hip injuries, incurred medical costs of more than $250,000 and was unable to perform her usual activities, the complaint says. In addition, she claims she endured disability, lost her normal life, suffered severe disfigurement and pain and lost wages.

Prothro names the property’s owners, Susan Kreitner, Susan Kreitner Trust, Edward Kreitner and Kreitner Properties and Leasing, as defendants. The defendants negligently failed to repair the porch and the steps, violated safety codes, failed to inspect the porch for safety, built a dangerous walkway for entry and exit, failed to inspect and fix the riser heights and failed to provide a handrail, according to the complaint.

In her eight-count complaint, Prothro is seeking a judgment of more than $400,000, plus costs.

Michael P. Glisson of Williamson, Webster, Falb and Glisson in Alton will be representing her.

Madison County Circuit Court case number: 12-L-1698.

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