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Slip and Fall Accidents in Retail Stores

Phoenix slip and fall injury attorney

Did you know that most slip and fall accidents occur in a grocery store? Today’s trend is to create mega stores that require more walking and have the stock personnel, as well as patrons, filling the aisles. What started out as a simple trip, to pick up a gallon of milk or a loaf of bread, can end up being a total nightmare. The store has a legal premises liability to keep its customers safe while in the store and on their grounds.

The Store’s Negligence Can Be Costly

How many times have you been inside the store and heard the famous announcement over the loud speakers come on with a “clean up on aisle 7” announcement? From broken jars of pickles to exploding pop cans; the store can be dangerous when product end up on the floors. Slip and fall accidents are becoming more common in these types of establishments, as there are many opportunities for a customer to get hurt. The law protects customers, should they become injured while shopping, due to the store’s negligence of keeping things clean and clear.

The Law Protects Shoppers

When a store has a spill or there is glass busted on the floor, they must close off the area and mark it with a “wet floor” sign. This is a warning to customers that the area is a hazard for slip and fall accidents. They must keep parking lots cleared, and rugs secured to the floor. Each day, their maintenance team needs to inspect the store for anything that could cause potential problems for their shoppers. This can be hard when a store is open 24/7 and always has customers about. Still, a store must maintain a safe environment for their customers to shop. Your safety should be their first concern. Thankfully, whether you are there to fill out an application, drop off a prescription, or deliver soda; the law protects you while you are on their property.

Common Slip and Fall Store Incidents

Most grocery stores have gone to the policy of closing the bathrooms when they are being serviced. This is due to the fact that so many accidents happen as the janitorial staff is mopping the floors. A wet floor is a sure sign of trouble when you have numerous people walking all over it. Some have tripped over an entryway rug, or even been hit from a falling package from the corner of a shelf. There are numerous ways a personal injury can occur inside a store.

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Invitees Are Covered Too

If you think that you have to be a paying customer to be protected by these laws, you are wrong. If you are inside the store or on the grounds, the law covers you. Even if you are just coming in to fill out an application for employment, you are covered. Delivery professionals and repair workers also fall under the jurisdiction of these protection laws. Anyone who is considered to be an “invitee” will find coverage while being on the store’s property.

Understanding The Duty Of Care

The store has a “duty of care” that requires them to make sure that the store and all its grounds are safe for shoppers and invitees. If the store does not ensure the grounds are safe, they have a breach in responsibility. By speaking with a personal injury lawyer, they can file a claim against the store for this breach. According to OSHA; nine out of ten of these injuries are due to the store’s negligent actions. How can the store be negligent? Here are a few ways:

  • Not Keeping Parking Lots Cleared
  • Not Keeping Carts Corralled
  • Leaving Spills Sit For Longer Periods
  • Keeping Restrooms Open While Being Serviced
  • Not Using “Wet Floor” Signs
  • Allowing Customers Access to Areas That Need Repairs
  • Uneven Floor Tiles or Rugs
  • Mechanical Failures
  • Troubled Elevators/Escalators
  • Not Having Sufficient Staff To Keep Up With Maintenance/Service Issues

The Burden of Proof

The cause of the accident is always traceable. However, every fall that occurs within a store does not always mean the store is liable. There must be a way to show that the store was negligent, to be able to prove they are the reason for the injury. The burden of proof rests on your shoulders, which is why you need an attorney to help you. You must show that the store knew about the hazardous condition and did nothing about it.

Collecting The Necessary Paperwork

After a slip or trip accident occurs at a retail establishment, you must get medical attention by calling for help to the site. It is also wise to get the police involved and make a report. Be sure to take pictures of the accident scene and to get witness reports to those who are close by. If any store professionals helped you when you fell, be sure to get their names too. Also, notate who the manager on duty was. You need to get as much information as you possibly can to help your case.

At Hirsch & Lyon Accident Law, we want to help you file a lawsuit for your injuries. We can go after the loss of wages, medical bills, and any pain and suffering that you have experienced.


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