No matter where you choose to spend your grocery money each week, you should always walk in and out of a store expecting to kept safe-and-sound on each visit. Unfortunately, busy hours and less than alert employees can leave a grocery store full of spills and debris. All obstacles that can wipe you out in a dangerous fall.
If you are hurt in a slip-and-fall or a trip-and-fall at a store of any kind, don’t be embarrassed. Thousands of people go to the hospital each year due to these types of falls. The important thing to remember is that the store owners and operators are responsible for your safety the minute you drive onto their lot.
When they don’t clean-up or repair potential hazards and you suffer a painful injury, you should not have to face the costs of recovery alone. Contact the Louisville slip-and-fall attorneys with Kaufman & Stigger, PLLC to discuss your case and for a free consultation on what your next move should be.
Louisville Grocery Store Slip-and-Fall Accident Dangers
Sometimes you stare at the fridge or the pantry and realize one thing. You can’t put off a trip to the grocery store any longer. In Louisville, that might mean a trip to the many Kroger’s around, or an upscale Meijers, or a Valu Market.
Price and selection are important, but you might also pay attention to safety the next time you enter a store. How clean are the floors kept? Are there obstacles in the parking lot?
Grocery stores have become giant places with lots of floor space and even bigger parking lots. There are many hazards potentially lying around each location:
- Spills — A surprisingly dangerous hazard that appears on store floors every day. Broken jars, ice cream, and cleaning solutions can all send someone to the ground. Water in the produce section can be another hazard that should be mopped up and blocked off with yellow or orange caution signs.
- Other Floor Hazards – Every aisle can have candy on the floor, or cans or boxes. Store stockers have become especially flagrant on leaving open boxes on the floor and even blocking aisles. A curled up floor mat, broken tiles, frayed carpet can all cause a fall.
- Weather Hazards – When Ohio winter storms hit, grocery stores are required to keep parking lots reasonably clear of snow and ice. Water tracked into the store should also be marked with warning signs and mopped up.
- Parking Lot Dangers — Cracked pavement, unsafe steps, and landscaping obstacles can all create opportunities for a trip-and-fall.
Grocery Store Owner’s Responsibility in Accidents
Any property or business owner must comply with “premises liability” laws that are meant to keep any visitors safe and also meant to provide for victims of accidents. A proprietor owes anyone entering their business a “duty of care” meaning they must provide a reasonably safe visit, free of hazards, to anyone who steps onto their premises.
When someone is hurt by an obstacle created by the owner or even created by another visitor, that owner can be held liable for every cost the victim faces in hospital bills and other financial hardships. Of course, owners and operators aren’t always eager to help victims that get hurt in their stores.
Owners and their lawyers may try to claim you caused your own accident. They might say you weren’t paying attention when you took your fall. They might claim you were in a part of the store not meant for the public. They also might say you ignored caution signs that were in place.
What to do if you are hurt in a Grocery Store Slip-and-Fall
Since your account of what happened may be questioned, it’s important to get all the evidence you can right after your accident. This is of course dependant on you being able to get up and move. If your injury prevents you from gathering evidence immediately, perhaps you can ask someone with you or a witness to take photos and collect other information.
Try to obtain these important details:
- Call 911 if you require medical care. Give paramedics a full report on your injuries.
- Take Photos – Before it’s cleaned up or repaired, use your cellphone to capture images of the hazard that sent you to the ground. Note any caution signs or the lack of signs and notice any lighting issues.
- Alert a store representative — Alert the owner or the shift manager about what happened. They will have to file an incident report. This report will be valuable evidence later.
- Don’t state that you’re okay or that the fall wasn’t serious. The truth is, you may not know how serious your injuries are for a day or two after the incident when the shock of the fall wears off.
- Get information from witnesses – If a witness will write down what they saw, that would be helpful, just make sure they sign and date the statement. They might also be willing to be recorded on your phone making their statement. Don’t forget, helpful employees can also be witnesses.
- See your doctor – Make an appointment with your personal physician. Get all pain that arises in the days after a fall checked out.
Slip-and-Fall at Louisville Grocery Stores
There are several great grocery stores in the Louisville area. However, improperly stored inventory can leave tripping hazards in aisles, forgotten spills can lead to slipping, and poor maintenance can cause a myriad of issues. Some of the most popular grocery stores in Louisville are:
Contact a Louisville Slip-And-Fall Accident Attorney
Accident victims often wonder if they need an attorney, and the answer is almost always yes. A major grocery store chain will likely have teams of lawyers and insurance agents all trying to blame your accident on you. They hope to dismiss your case or get you to accept a compensation offer that’s less than fair. You need an attorney looking out for your interests and making sure an insurance company can’t ignore your physical, emotional, and financial hardships.
Talk to a Louisville Slip-And-Fall Accident Attorney you can trust to be on your side and fight for your fair compensation. The attorneys at Kaufman & Stigger, PLLC, have that knowledge and a combined 100 years’ experience in helping clients get the compensation they’ll need to make a full recovery. To discuss your case, contact Kaufman & Stigger, PLLC today, by clicking here to contact them online.