How To Handle In-Store Accidents

If you own or operate a business and someone gets hurt on your property for whatever reason, it could very well result in a serious personal injury lawsuit and a hefty insurance payout.

This article will give you some basic “homework” to do that will go a long way toward minimising the chances of such an accident happening again.

Be Proactive in Minimising “Slip and Fall” Injuries

In-store accidents are very common. They result in thousands of injuries every year. Most often, the accident occurs because a shopper steps on something on the floor and then falls. In fact, falls are the number one cause of injury in retail establishments. But there is good news. You can do a great deal to minimise these types of injuries.

The first thing you should do is keep the floors clean. Remove all debris that could be a potential tripping hazard. Sweep or mop the floor regularly. When the floor is wet, have a sign that says “Wet Floor” where everyone can see it.

Have The Right Signage

When it comes to creating an effective accident-avoidance program, the most important element is proper signage. By getting this aspect right, you can dramatically reduce the severity of injuries and even prevent some injuries completely!

The proper signage will tell customers where they can walk freely, where to avoid and how to take care of themselves when work is being done in the store.

Protect Your Business Against Claims

In-store accidents can have a huge impact on your business, especially if it results from negligence. It’s important you know how to save your business from financial loss should such an event occur.

Of course, it’s easy to blame the customer for their behaviour, but this may not be a good idea. The bottom line is you are liable for any injury in your store. If you are sued, you will be required to pay all legal costs even if you win or settle out of court. Even if no legal costs are awarded, this could still cost thousands. It’s far less expensive to have appropriate public liability insurance cover in place.

Conduct Regular Audits and Inspections

Inspect the premises at least once every month. Make sure there are no safety hazards that could lead to an accident. Ensure all your products are safe and secure. If there is a particular product you sell that has a high risk of being a choking hazard for children, then you should consider removing it from your store. This will make your customers feel comfortable and confident in your store.

Have an Emergency Systems Set Up

When disaster strikes, your customers can turn on you, and your competition won’t hesitate to jump on their “lucky break”. However, by taking a few simple precautions, you can dramatically reduce your exposure to liability and protect your profits. Don’t wait until something bad happens to make these necessary changes. By then, it may be too late.

Final Words

When it comes to injury prevention, it’s critical for retailers to dot their I’s and cross their T’s. It may not be the most exciting job, but maintaining your store and keeping it safe may actually save your business from incidents that can result in financial loss.