When You Slip and Fall in a Grocery Store
Slip and Fall Law
In California, every grocery store and other retailer has a legal obligation to maintain their store in a reasonably safe condition so as to minimize the risk of a fall and patron injuries. When store employees fail to remedy a dangerous condition or warn customers of its existence so it can be avoided, the store may be held liable for the injuries and damages that result. This is known as premises liability law.
Protecting Your Rights
After a slip or trip and fall in a store, you should do everything you reasonably can to protect your right to compensation. All too often, a slip and fall victim will get up from the floor and, because of their embarrassment, simply walk away without reporting the incident to store management. Later, if the customer realizes more than just their pride was hurt, they may have compromised their ability to obtain compensation for their injuries and damages (such as pain and suffering, medical expenses, lost wages, etc.). Documenting the fall with an incident report and photographs of the condition causing the fall are the best way to protect your rights.
Special Concerns with Grocery Stores
When it comes to grocery stores, they have what might be best described as a heightened duty to maintain their salesfloor in a clean and safe condition. Unlike other types of retailers, grocery chains sell produce and other items that can be easily spilled on the floor and create a particularly dangerous slipping hazard. In the grocery industry, the standard of care requires that they clean and/or inspect their floor every 15-20 minutes to make sure there are no dangerous conditions present. "Sweep sheets", as they are often called, are meant to document the regular cleaning and inspections. When the work isn't done and the sweep sheets don't reflect reasonable maintenance, liability may be imposed on the store.
If you are injured by the neglect of a grocery or other type of store, you should contact an experienced personal injury in order to protect your rights and secure compensation for your injuries and damages.