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Preventing Trips, Slips and Falls during Holiday Shopping

Property owners, including businesses, individuals and public institutions, have a responsibility to ensure that their premises are safe.

In one of our previous posts, we discussed how property owners can prevent outdoor falling injuries in the winter months. However, indoor hazards are also a concern, perhaps especially during winter when Ontario residents do their holiday shopping.

With increased pedestrian traffic in shopping malls and stores, there is a greater risk that spilled liquid, ripped carpet and malfunctioning escalators will cause slip- or trip-and-fall injuries. Debris, clothing and other retail items left in aisles also present a trip-and-fall hazard. If any of these matters arise, then the store or mall management has an obligation to monitor and remedy the hazard in a timely manner.

Signage should also be in place to alert customers if a spill or debris cannot be cleaned up immediately.

Falling objects are another concern in a busy retail setting. Sometimes head and neck injuries are caused by objects that fall from shelves or displays, and the risk of this happening can be heightened in heavily trafficked areas.

In addition to making certain that displays and shelves are sturdy, store owners must ensure that employees are properly trained to stock items so that they do not pose a risk of injury to customers.

One might assume that common sense would prevent these kinds of hazards, but every year customers are injured in preventable shopping accidents. Gluckstein Personal Injury Lawyers represent clients who have been hurt because of property owner negligence. If you would like to learn more about legal matters related to trip- and slip-and-fall accidents, then our Occupiers' Liability overview is a good place to start.

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