While Black Friday is behind us, the injuries reported around the world during these sales are reason enough to brush up on your safe shopping skills. The reality is that at this time of year many premises liability cases in Hollywood and Florida arise from shopping trips gone wrong. Unfortunately, some shoppers in our community are injured each year while visiting stores, shops, and malls and in some cases the injuries they sustain are life-threatening. At this time of year, there is also often an increase in thefts and other types of crimes.
When shopping this year, authorities recommend that you stay safe by:
1) Locking your car when you shop or use an ATM.
Locking up your car, even if you will only be out for a minute, is a smart precaution that can help prevent theft and other crimes. You don’t want to be injured because your car made an attractive target for a thief and you happened to interrupt a crime.
2) Being aware of your surroundings.
Whether you are walking through a quiet parking lot or a crowded space, don’t get so caught up in shopping that you miss what is happening around you. Scan the area for any suspicious activity, any tripping hazards, or any cars that could pose a pedestrian accident hazard.
3) Choosing your shopping experiences wisely.
When shopping, stay away from stores that are packed, as they have a higher risk of falls and trip and fall incidents. At the same time, be aware that shopping in remote areas, especially if they are poorly lit or in areas known for crime activity, could also put you at risk. Shop in areas with good pedestrian traffic, well-lit and clean walkways, and good security measures.
4) Choosing shopping partners wisely.
Shopping with friends or family can help you stay safer and can be more fun. However, keep in mind that shopping in a large crowd can be distracting and can potentially make you more of a target. For the same reason, you may wish to leave small children at home. They can easily get lost in crowds, can become overtired, or can get injured in busy holiday crowds.
5) Parking safely.
Use valet parking services where they are available; many shops offer these services right now to reduce parking lot congestion. If valet services are not available, park in a well-lighted area near the store or shop. Carry your keys in your hand when walking to and from the car. When returning to your car, take a look around the vehicle, underneath it, and inside it before entering.
6) Reporting any problems to store management.
Do you see a spill in an aisle or suspicious activity at the entrance? Report anything that could be a danger to yourself or other shoppers. Stores have a high duty of care to customers to keep patrons safe.
Have you been injured in a store or mall parking lot? If you have been injured on any business premises, you may have a legal claim against any liable parties and you may be eligible for compensation to help pay for property damage, medical costs, pain and suffering and more. If you have been injured, learn more by contacting the law offices of Flaxman Law Group for a free, no obligation case review.