When Your World Goes Topsy-Turvy

Whether a large chain store or a local mom-and-pop operation, any business that invites the public onto its premises is obligated to keep customers reasonably safe and out of harm’s way. Failure to do so may be grounds for an injury claim against the store.

Slip-and-fall accidents occur frequently at stores across the nation and even more so during the busy holiday season. Slip-and-falls can occur in a number of ways. An accumulation of snow and ice at the entryway, or melted snow tracked into the store may prove treacherous. A rug or fl oor mat may bunch up and trip someone. Perhaps some wayward grapes in the produce section have escaped to the fl oor, or water has trickled onto the fl oor from a leaky pipe. Poor lighting can conceal dangers otherwise noticeable. Displays may be haphazardly placed, and newly waxed fl oors might send someone tumbling.

The owner of the store may be held liable for slip-and-fall injuries if he or she created the situation—e.g., an exceptionally slippery fl oor or awkwardly positioned display. A store may also be liable if it knew of a potentially dangerous condition, even if it didn’t create it, but failed to take the proper action to remedy it in a reasonable amount of time.

Customers have an expectation upon them, too. Should a reasonably careful customer have noticed the unsafe condition and avoided it?

Those who suffer slip-and-fall injuries at a store due to negligence should contact a premises liability attorney to protect their rights.