When a NJ Supermarket Fails at Maintenance and Accident Prevention
It was an accident just waiting to happen. More than likely, you’ve heard those words and hoped they’d never apply to you. Unfortunately, the truth hurts. As an afterthought, you can’t help but wonder what happens when a supermarket fails at maintenance and accident prevention.
When you walk into a grocery store or any retail outlet, you become a business invitee. As such, you should rightfully expect to enter premises without the risk of hazardous conditions. The property owner has a duty to look out for your safety. Within reason.
Reasonable care represents a real standard when it comes to slip and fall accidents. It could involve giving the store manager or associates notice of a potentially dangerous condition. And, allowing them ample time to rectify the situation.
Take for example this scenario. You walk into one of the local supermarkets in Jersey City, such as the Acme or Shop Rite. Admittedly, you’re juggling a few things as you attempt to maneuver your quarter to unlock the shopping cart for your use in the store.
It seems surreal as the entire contents of your pocketbook drop before you. Worse yet, your foot gets stuck in the strap of your purse, and you find yourself unable to prevent your fall. Embarrassed, you attempt to get up and hope no one saw you. Unfortunately, you’re badly hurt and can’t get back on your feet.
Make A Report
Is this type of accident the fault of the supermarket? From this fact pattern, it would seem not. However, an investigation might prove otherwise. Was there something slippery that caused you to fall? Did management know of the hazard or should they have known of its existence?
Even if you are uncertain of what causes you to slip and fall, you should always make a report to the store personnel. You should also take photographs and get the names of any witnesses in case it turns you out your injuries warrant a personal injury claim.
If you’ve ever worked for a supermarket, you likely know how critical maintenance and accident prevention is to store operations. In many cases, management actually conducts mandatory customer safety programs for all employees.
For most major supermarkets, store personnel must complete daily checklists as far as maintaining the premises to avoid accidents. Here are some items generally targeted:
- Are there concerns about leaks near refrigerator sections?
- How secure are displays featuring projects?
- Are the aisles free of debris and merchandise?
- What about the parking lot? Well lit? Free of potholes?
- Are floor mats securely positioned?
- How about shopping carts? Are they scattered everywhere?
- Does the store resemble an obstacle course?
- Are the walking surfaces clean and mopped dry?
As you can imagine, these are just the basics. It is up to the supermarket’s management team to ensure you do not face risks because of negligence on their part.
Despite the store’s best intentions on maintenance and accident prevention, you can still suffer harm. You have the right to file a claim if the owners of the premises neglected their duty to ensure your safety. Unfortunately, accidents do happen in food stores.
If you’ve been injured while in a grocery store, the Law Offices of Anthony Carbone would like to assist you. Take advantage of our three decades of representing injury victims and give us a call at 201-733-2230.