Slip and fall accidents are the most common cause of injuries and deaths in people over 65 years old, according to the CDC. Often, these accidents are preventable. Here are five ways businesses can avoid slip and fall accidents at retail locations.
1. Clean Up Spills
Spills are one common cause of slip and fall accidents. Substances like dish soap, grease, oil, and water may be hard to see, causing customers to slip. Store staff must clean up spills promptly to keep their customers safe. If the store failed to clean the spill in a reasonable amount of time, they could be liable for any injuries the spill caused. Sometimes, staff fails to clean the spill thoroughly, leaving a sticky or slippery residue that lasts for weeks and causes slips and falls. In this case, the store may also be held responsible.
2. Maintain Floors and Ground
Cracks in concrete slabs, buckled wood floors, and fraying carpets are also a hazard that can cause slip and fall accidents. Improper outdoor premises maintenance, such as uneven sidewalks, may also cause injuries. In rainy weather, road markers and pedestrian walkway paint can become extremely slippery, leading to slips and falls.
Even if a business owner properly cleans and maintains flooring, a lack of signage to alert customers of slippery conditions can result in accidents. Newly polished or waxed floors without the proper signage are a common cause of slip and fall accidents. Also, failure to use caution cones in high-traffic areas during rainy weather can lead to slip and fall accidents.
4. Proper Storage
Walkways should be kept clear and uncluttered for staff and guest use. Improperly storing boxes in hallways or guest areas causes slip and fall accidents. Improperly stocking merchandise on high shelves can lead to items falling on customers or cause contents to spill out into aisle floors. Clutter, trash, and loose electrical cords can cause slip and fall accidents, as well.
5. Adequate Lighting
While many retail locations use various lighting techniques to help create a particular ambiance, atmosphere lighting is not always practical to keep patrons safe. Customers need to see where they’re walking, and store staff needs proper lighting to do their jobs. Insufficient lighting may cause customers and employees to suffer serious injuries. Adequate lighting is also important in outdoor areas: a store could be liable for accidents that occur in parking lots, gas stations, and outdoor restroom facilities if proper lighting is not provided.
If you were seriously injured at a mall, grocery store, clothing outlet, or other retail location because of the store’s negligence in preventing an accident, you might be entitled to compensation for your injuries. At The King Law Firm, we use various methods such as eyewitness testimony, security tape footage, and photographs to document the hazard and help prove the business’s negligence. If you were injured from a slip and fall accident at a retail location, call our Ocala personal injury lawyers at 352-269-1814 for a free case evaluation.