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Stores must ensure patrons can shop safely

When you go to any store, you just want to make your purchase and leave. You certainly aren't walking around looking for ways to get hurt. Sadly, there are some customers who are involved in accidents while they are shopping. The results of these can range from minor injuries like bruising to major injuries that can kill.

The duty to keep store patrons safe falls on the store's owners, management, and other employees. Each establishment must have a clear policy outlined to handle the most common hazards that customers might face. This has to be conveyed to all employees so that they know what is expected.

Customers can face hazards throughout the parking lot and store. These can range from uneven pavement and loose gravel in the parking lot that can lead to falls to objects that can fall onto a customer from a high shelf.

One of the most common hazards that patrons can face has to do with slippery floors. When it rains, the stores have a problem to address because people will come in with wet shoes. This makes the floor wet and presents a slip hazard. Employees need to put out wet floor signs and can use mats and fans to try to make the surface safer.

Another issue that comes up has to do with stocking. Shelves that are top heavy can tip over. Objects that aren't properly secured and positioned on top shelves can fall onto people.

Lax security, especially when there are events at the store, can also cause problems. Patrons can be trampled by large crowds, such as those associated with Black Friday sales.

People who are injured in accidents at a store might choose to seek compensation for the effects of the situation. In order to do this, there must be recklessness or negligence on the part of the establishment's representatives.

Source: FindLaw, "Shopping Injuries Overview," accessed June 08, 2018

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