Fred Meyer stores are called hypermarket stores because they have the goal of being a one-stop shopping center for all customer needs. This has been copied many times over the years, but in 1931 when they opened their first store in Oregon, they were one of the first to attempt this model.
Eventually, they came to Spokane and opened three stores, two in Spokane proper and one in the valley. Shoppers enjoy the convenience of one-stop shopping where you can get a quart of oil for your car, a shirt, and a watermelon if the need arises.
Spokane residents have flocked to Fred Meyer stores for years and have enjoyed the convenience and the competitive prices.
This popularity is a good thing for business, however, the more people that shop at a Fred Meyer, the more they are at risk of a serious injury. This isn’t because Fred Meyer is any more susceptible to an injury than any other grocery store, but because the more people that come through their doors, the higher the likelihood that an injury will happen.
Causes of an Injury at a Fred Meyer
Fred Meyer stores dedicate around 50,000 to 70,000 square feet to their grocery department which is above average for any grocery store. Within this space, there are many risks to shoppers for an injury. Most of the risk is due to a slip and fall caused by a dangerous hazard on the floor of the store. A dangerous hazard can be caused by anything such as wine from a broken bottle, or a piece of watermelon.
Shoppers can also trip over objects such as a box or a collapsed caution sign. Just about any object or substance on the floor can cause an injury.
Duty to Keep Shoppers Safe
Under Washington law, Fred Meyer has a duty to keep their premises reasonably free from hazards such as spilled liquids, debris, and other problems that can cause someone to fall.
This means that Fred Meyer has the responsibility to keep the floor reasonably clean and free of spills and hazards to prevent slip or trip and fall accidents. This doesn’t mean that any injury from a fall creates liability for the store, rather the law gives the store a reasonable amount of time to fix a dangerous hazard.
If you are injured at a Fred Meyer grocery store, the store manager is going to say that their efforts to fix the problem were reasonable under the law and you are not entitled to compensation.
At Crary, Clark, Domanico, & Chuang, P.S., we know how to make a claim stick. We know their defenses and know the tricks of the insurance companies that like nothing better than to deny you compensation.
Types of Injuries in a Slip and Fall
At any grocery store, there are all sorts of hazards that can cause injury. Most come from slipping and falling or tripping over some object, but there are other injuries that come up as well. At Crary, Clark, Domanico, & Chuang, P.S., we’ve seen them all, and we have experience in getting compensation for any type of injury at a grocery store.
Some of the more common injuries we’ve seen come from stores like Fred Meyer Supermarkets are:
- Broken Wrists
- Broken Hips
- Facial Bone Fractures
- Head Injuries
- Spinal Cord Injuries
- Severe Back Strain
- Angle Breaks/Sprains
- Deep Lacerations
- Chemical Burns
Causes of Injuries
Most injuries in a Fred Meyer come from someone falling. Slipping on some spilled wine or a piece of fruit. Trips happen too from boxes left out or a caution sign that wasn’t put away. There is a lot of refrigeration equipment in a grocery store, and these sometimes leak fluids which can be dangerous. Also, electrocutions can happen as well as falling products or debris from a ceiling.
Failure to Act after Becoming Aware of the Hazard
The law gives the owner of a store the right to fix their dangerous hazard in a reasonable amount of time, but just how long and what is reasonable is up to the jury. In most cases, the owner/manager is aware of the hazard but simply takes too long to clean it up. If someone comes along in the meantime and gets injured, then the store owner is liable for the person’s injuries.
Failure to Fix Properly
The law also says that if the store owner fixed the problem in a negligent manner or did something to directly cause the hazard in the first place, then they are negligent and are liable for any injuries that come from their negligence.
Making a Claim
Slip and Fall cases are sometimes difficult to prove because the owner will claim they did things in a reasonable and safe manner. At Crary, Clark, Domanico, & Chuang, P.S., we know how to make a proper and legal claim and how to show that their efforts to fix weren’t reasonable or done in a timely manner.
Remember, all you were doing was trying to shop at their store, and you were injured. Don’t let the insurance company put it back on you or tell you that it wasn’t the store’s fault.
Contact a Spokane Premises Liability Lawyer.
Established in Spokane in 1948, Crary, Clark, Domanico, & Chuang, P.S. is committed to providing our clients with the absolute highest quality legal representation. If our Premises Liability Lawyers represent you for your accident case, you have our assurance that we will use our absolute best efforts to win your case. Contact us after any accident resulting in a serious injury for a free, confidential consultation and case evaluation. We will only offer you advice which is in your best interest.