It is a typical sunny day in Tampa, and you stop by the grocery store to pick up dinner. You get a few produce items and head to the dairy section to pick up some ice cream. What you don’t plan for is tripping over a torn floor mat with some liquid spilled over the top. You realize your day has undergone a significant turn of events and are unsure what to do next. Here are some tips you should know after enduring a slip and fall in the grocery store.
Find a Manager
The primary thing you should do after you fall is to seek out a manager on duty. If you cannot get up, ask someone nearby to find one. A manager or store owner must see you as soon as possible so they can know what made you fall and how it happened. The liquid you slipped on may have come from a faulty refrigeration unit or another source, like a leaky food container. Remember as much information as possible about the conversations you exchange and what immediate steps the manager takes for later reference.
Try to Get an Accident Report
During your conversation with the manager, ask if they will fill out a report for your fall. Generally, grocery stores and supermarkets have a policy that requires it. The report will include the location of the incident, date, time and, most likely, your contact information. Avoid apologizing for the accident, even if you think it is your fault. Hire a lawyer at Burnett Law, P.A. to decide who is at fault after further investigation. Try to get a copy of the accident report for your records, although the manager may not release it.
Ask for Medical Assistance
If you sustain an injury in the fall, ask someone to call 911 to get medical help. If you are unsure that you are hurt, asking for care is still a good idea. Refusing medical care after your fall will be included in the incident report, and if you need to see a doctor later, it will be harder to prove the location and cause of your injury. Additionally, if the paramedics arrive and you leave by ambulance to visit the emergency room, it will provide more evidence of the severity of your accident. Remember that it is better to be safe and have yourself checked out by medical professionals.
Gather Evidence With Your Smartphone
Your cellphone will be a valuable tool to document evidence of your fall. Use it to take photos of where the fall occurred and surrounding areas. Take pictures of everything you can that may prove valuable in an inquiry, including your injuries. Having images from multiple angles will ensure you record all the necessary information. A video can also be a great way to gather evidence if your accident was near a moving object that may have played a part in the cause.
Look for a Witness
Chances are, someone else was present to see what happened when you fell. A family member or a friend might be with you, but finding someone who does not know you is a better witness. They will have an unbiased version of the incident that will be useful in the future to prove any liability from the store owner. It is best to gather all witnesses’ names and phone numbers, even if you feel one person is the most relevant. Just like taking extra photos, having multiple witness accounts is ideal.
Contact a Lawyer
Contacting a personal injury lawyer is essential to ensure you get appropriate compensation for your fall. Typically, most slip-and-fall accidents have a different outcome when people know to call a lawyer. A business will try to pay as little as possible when an accident occurs on their property, and insurance may also not record the correct information to benefit you. An accident lawyer will have the experience and knowledge it takes to know how to deal with the process and procedures to help you recover any expenses or loss of wages.
A sudden slip and fall is something that can happen to anyone. It can come at any time when you least expect it, and you can incur long-lasting expenses. Understanding how to respond to an incident like this allows you to act quickly and begin recovering your losses.