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Slips, trips and falls: When grocery shopping becomes dangerous

When you do your grocery shopping, the furthest thing from your mind is the possibility of sustaining an injury. Yet the most common cause of injury in grocery stores is slip-and-fall accidents, and the injuries can be more serious than you think.

However, you cannot just stop buying food for your family. Instead, you can prepare with knowledge on how to avoid slips, trips and falls and what to do if they happen.

How to avoid injury

The first step to preventing a slip, trip or fall is knowing how they happen.

  • Slips: Wet floors are the most common causes of slipping. Grocery store employees may have just mopped or a shopper may have spilled something. Watch out for cones and wet-floor signs and avoid those areas. If you see an uncleaned mess, notify an employee.
  • Trips: You are most likely to trip on merchandise inside the store. Stay clear of cluttered aisles and boxes, leaving your cart if you need something in an obstructed section. Trips also happen outside the store due to uneven or broken sidewalks and parking lots.
  • Falls: Although most falls follow slips and trips, they can occur on their own as well. You may be reaching for something on a high shelf and lose your balance, for example. Asking for employee assistance is your best preventive measure against falls.

It is also wise to be aware of other shoppers around you and places under maintenance to avoid further accidents.

What to do if you suffer an injury

Because you are in a public place, you will be able to receive help after a slip, trip or fall, and the store manager will know of the incident. Explain in detail what happened and take photos on your phone if possible. Then seek medical treatment immediately. Common injuries include fractures, sprains and even head trauma. Even if you feel fine, schedule an appointment with your health care provider. Finally, speak to a personal injury lawyer about pursuing financial compensation for your injury and its effects on your life.

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