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Black Friday and Cyber Monday Accident Trap

Black Friday sales are fast approaching with many stores and shops already starting sales before the day. These sales naturally extend into the festive shopping period for Christmas gifting and Boxing Day bargains.

During this time, many people are on the lookout for a bargain and more so due to the cost of living crisis. We often hear about rushes of people and sometimes sadly stampedes of people shopping to find the latest discounted deal giving the adage ‘shop till you drop’ a whole new meaning.

Footfalls in shopping centres and stores can rise which can lead to an increased risk of hazards or risks developing, which on some unfortunate occasions result in an accident.

Shopping centres, supermarkets department stores and shops owe a duty of care to people visiting their premises to ensure their safety.

The Law

The Occupiers’ Liability Act 1957 (OLA 1957) enacts a duty of care on occupiers to all lawful visitors to ensure that they are reasonably safe for the purpose for which they are on the occupier’s premises. A party will be considered to be an occupier under OLA 1957 if they have sufficient control over the premises.

The Risks

The main hazards that arise include hazards on the floor such as products and items like clothing and incorrectly displayed or stored items falling onto shoppers.

During this time, employees can be under pressure with a lot of tasks and duties to perform during a highly pressurised and busy time. There may also be seasonal staff who have not been adequately trained to deal with hazards and risks.

This can inevitably lead to a decline in maintaining health and safety measures. Hazards may develop which cannot be remedied or warning signs may not be able to put in place to alert shoppers to a hazard.

There may also be a higher likelihood of being involved in a road traffic accident as drivers may be in a rush to find parking or leave quickly as well as pedestrians being distracted.

During a busy time like Black Friday and Christmas Shopping it is important to remain vigilant of developing hazards.

What to do if you have an accident?

Regrettably, it is not always possible to avoid an accident. If you do suffer injuries, it is important to ensure the accident is reported to the Defendant’s employees and take photos of the cause of the accident as this may be valuable contemporaneous evidence for a legal case at a later stage. It is always beneficial to obtain contact details for any witnesses who may have seen your accident or provided any assistance. You may also need to seek prompt medical attention if your injuries require further treatment.

Shopping at this time of the year can be an incredibly fun experience alone, with family or friends. Please make sure to keep safe and have a jolly good end to the year.

If you think you may be entitled to compensation following an accident whilst shopping, please do not hesitate to contact our expert Personal Injury lawyers on 0330 822 3451 or request a call back online for bespoke legal advice and guidance.

Further Reading