You may regard shopping as either a recreational activity or as a necessary chore. In either case, you may not think of it as a potentially dangerous activity. Nevertheless, injuries that occur due to hazardous conditions that exist inside or outside a retail store or shopping center are prevalent enough to go by the collective term “shopping injuries.”
The owner of a business has a responsibility to address any hazards that may occur in the store to ensure your safety, and that of other visitors, to a reasonable degree. This is usually true even if the business owner only rents the commercial property. Even so, dangerous conditions can arise and cause different types of accidents.
- Parking lot injuries
The most common causes of injuries in commercial parking lots include failure to remove snow or ice and failure to repair cracked pavement. In either case, the business owner and/or the commercial landlord may be liable for failing to address these hazardous situations.
- Slip-and-fall injuries
Common causes of slip-and-fall injuries include inadequate lighting, torn carpets and wet floors. If the shopping center contains an escalator, this can pose a particular threat if not maintained to ensure proper functioning.
- Overcrowding injuries
Shopping centers are particularly busy during certain times of the year. One of the busiest is the season between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Day. Overcrowding during this time can create especially dangerous situations that can lead to people becoming trampled in the rush to get into the store.
- Shopping cart injuries
Most people, shoppers and store owners alike, may not give much thought to shopping carts. Nevertheless, shopping carts may be prone to tip over and cause injuries, particularly if they do not receive regular maintenance.
If there is a hazardous situation on a retail property that causes you to become injured, you may be able to seek legal recourse from the business owner. However, you must be able to demonstrate to the court that the owner should have known about the danger yet did nothing to address it.