Malls and shopping centers in Rhode Island are legally required to maintain their premises safely for shoppers, employees, visitors and guests. If someone is injured at a strip mall, outdoor shopping center or an indoor mall, it is crucial that the victim retains a Rhode Island Personal Injury Lawyer to investigate the claim and pursue compensation to compensate for pain and suffering, medical bills, lost wages and other damages.
Mall and shopping accident lawyer
Shopping plazas have heightened obligations during snowstorms and bad weather conditions to properly plow the parking areas and protect against ice and slippery conditions on the premises as well as shovel snow from entrance ways and other areas.
If you were injured at a mall accident in Warwick, Cranston or Providence then you should contact a Rhode Island mall accident attorney. There are thousands of different types of accidents and negligent activity that could occur at a department stores such as Walmart, Kmart, Macys or Sam’s Club. These mishaps include but are not limited to:
- Falling or shifting boxes or merchandise causing traumatic head trauma, back or neck injuries or other serious injury.
- Pedestrian accidents in parking lots as a result of poor or improper signage, overhanging trees or lack of parking control
- Cars speeding in the parking lot or failing to obey crosswalks or stop signs causing a RI automobile accident and pedestrian accidents
- Slip and fall in a parking lot on snow, wet leaves, oil or ice accumulations.
- Accidents and collisions caused by distracted pedestrians utilizing their smartphone, cell phones, Iphone, Andriod devices, gps or even texting and driving.
Shopping malls and retail centers are always a busy place especially during the holiday season with many shoppers filling the parking lots, food court and retail shops. Because of the hustle and bustle, confusion and tight spaces, shopping malls are often the place where accidents in Rhode Island occur both inside and outside the establishment. Numerous shopping-related accidents cause serious injuries and sometimes death to customers simply wanting to enjoy a day at the mall.
Mall shopping accidents in RI
Mall shopping center accidents in RI cover a broad array of personal injuries that happen when visiting stores and restaurants at the mall. While most shopping-related injuries tend to be minor in scope, other more serious injuries can occur including:
• Broken bones such as hip and ankle fractures
• Head trauma, concussions and traumatic brain injuries (TBIs)
• Sprains and strains
• Spinal injury
• Bruises and lacerations
The incidences of shopping related injuries in Rhode Island and Providence Plantations usually escalate during heavy shopping seasons including “Black Friday” and throughout the Christmas holidays. Common types of mall shopping accidents occur on the premises including:
Shopping related accidents:
• Slip and fall injuries due to wet floors, poorly lit areas, torn carpeting and malfunctioning escalators
• Body and head injuries occurring from falling objects including retail displays, hard to reach products or other mishap
• Injuries from overcrowding when customers are trampled during special sale events
• Shopping cart injury when a full cart tips over
• Parking lot injury due to improperly designed or maintained parking lots or failure to remove accumulated snow or ice
Personal Injury Claim in Providence
Any individual injured in Cumberland, Lincoln, Woonsocket or in RI while visiting or invitee on commercial property has a legal right to file a personal injury claim for compensation. These types of claims are allowed under Rhode Island’s premises liability laws where property owners, storekeepers and establishments are required to exercise reasonable care to provide a safe environment to the customer.
However, obtaining compensation in a premises liability claim in Rhode Island can be complicated. The victim is required to prove how negligence of the parties at fault directly caused their damages and injuries. In fact there are elements of proof required that may include:
1. The property owner or tenant knew, or should have known, that the dangerous condition existed on the property
2. The property owner or tenant failed to inspect the premises regularly for any danger or failed to provide adequate maintenance to ensure a safe environment
3. The victim was injured as a result of the dangerous condition on the premises
4. There is a direct correlation between the victim’s injury and the dangerous condition on the property
5. The victim suffers actual damages because of the injuries acquired on the premises
Retail Shopping Center slip and fall Attorney
The storekeeper, property owner, management or other party considered at fault for the accident will push back to avoid paying financial compensation to the victim. Typically, the parties at fault will build a defense in an effort to divert blame to the victim by claiming:
• The parties at fault had no knowledge that the dangerous condition existed on the property
• The parties at fault took reasonable steps to ensure that the dangerous condition was fixed or barricaded
• The victim suffered no actual injury
• The victim was negligent, where their careless actions caused the accident or the victim was partially at fault for the mishap
Because of that, victims will hire a Warwick, Cranston or Providence personal injury attorney to handle their case. A reputable East Providence negligence lawyer who specializes in mall shopping accidents can determine what parties are at fault and hold them accountable for monetary damages.
Parking lot injury claim
Barrington, Bristol or Warren Personal injury law firms accept cases on contingency and offer free no obligation consultations to discuss the strength and weakness of your case. The Cumberland, Woonsocket or East Greenwich Personal injury attorney can provide numerous options on how to obtain compensation for your medical expenses, lost wages, pain, suffering and damages caused by the accident.
NBC Washington reported, “The number of pedestrians being hit by cars in parking lots has skyrocketed by more than 70 percent in the past few years — and experts say the drivers are usually at fault. (Published Thursday, Nov. 21, 2013) Before you hit the mall to do some holiday shopping, Montgomery County Police have a message: Be careful. The number of pedestrians being hit by cars in parking lots spikes during the holidays. Drivers angling for parking spaces and shoppers walking between the parked cars can be a bad combination.” NBC
The Supreme Court of Rhode Island located in Providence set forth the applicable tort / negligence standard of care when the Highest Tribunal in Rhode Island Stated: that business owners had a duty “to exercise reasonable care for the safety of persons reasonably expected to be on the premises * * * includ[ing] an obligation to protect against the risks of a dangerous condition existing on the premises, provided the landowner knows of, or by the exercise of reasonable care would have discovered, the dangerous condition.” Kurczy v. St. Joseph Veterans Association, Inc., 820 A.2d 929, 935 (R.I.2003) (quoting Tancrelle v. Friendly Ice Cream Corp., 756 A.2d 744, 752 (R.I. 2000)); accord Mead v. Papa Razzi Restaurant, 840 A.2d 1103, 1107 (R.I.2004)…Although a business invitor is not a guarantor of the safety of those who might be expected on the property, a duty remains to maintain the premises in a reasonably safe condition for prospective business invitees.” Terry v. Central Auto Radiators, Inc., 732 A.2d 713, 716(R.I.1999).
Bar, nightclub & tavern related accident
Some Providence, Warwick, Newport and RI shopping centers have lively and popular bars, taverns or nightclubs who sometimes serve too much alcohol to patrons. This can lead to a multitude of problems and disturbances, not the least of which is fights, property damage, criminal activity, drunk driving and increased automobile accidents in the shopping plaza parking lot. A mall accident is a tragic event and all precautions should be taken to avoid a mall accident and any resulting injuries.
Occasionally, an overzealous bouncer who has been watching too many reality television shows actually assaults a drunk patron. If you are a victim of a bouncer assault in Rhode Island then it is important that you retain a RI Bouncer Assault lawyer. The most serious problem that can occur is an intoxicated bar or restaurant patron killing a pedestrian in the parking lot or parking garage accident.
Restaurant and Fast Food Joint Negligence
There are many instances of a guest slipping and falling on water, soda, beer, food or a slippery substance on the floor of a restaurant. If someone is injured in a slip and fall or a trip and fall accident as a result of negligence of a restaurant, grocery store or other business establishment then they should take a picture or video as soon as possible and immediately contact a Rhode Island Slip and fall Attorney.
Sadly, some restaurant guests are victims of food poisoning caused by restaurants failing to utilize proper safety precautions in preparing and serving food. A Restaurant, bar or nightclub may also face Dram Shop Liability for knowingly, negligently or recklessly serving a visibly intoxicated guest who then later injures or even kills a third person in a RI drunk driving auto crash.
Duty of reasonable care
The Supreme Court of Rhode Island (RI) stated “[A] landowner has a duty to exercise reasonable care for the safety of persons reasonably expected to be on the premises, and that duty includes an obligation to protect against the risks of a dangerous condition existing on the premises, provided the landowner knows of, or by the exercise of reasonable care would have discovered, the dangerous condition. The burden of proving that sufficient evidence existed to show that the defendants knew or should have known of an unsafe condition on their premises is on the plaintiff.” Lieberman v. Bliss-Doris Realty Associates
Distracted Diving – Texting and driving
Teting while driving in through ways, streets, parking garage and parking lots is a very serious matter. Motor Vehicle, Van, SUV and Motorcycle operators who are texting and driving or are otherwise distracted in the parking lot are at risk of crashing into other cars or being involved in pedestrian accidents. Injuries from parking garage and parking lot accidents include herniated disks, whiplash type injuries as well as neck, head, leg and back injuries. There have also been reports of drowsy or sleepy driving causing accidents near malls and shopping centers in Providence and surrounding area.
Negligent and Inadequate Security resulting from criminal acts of third parties
Criminal activity, such as assault, shoplifting, muggings, rape or murder can been partially caused by a negligent lack of security. Malls and Shopping plazas are required to provide proper security for guests. If you were injured at a shopping plaza as a result of a criminal action or attack please contact a Rhode Island Negligent Security Personal Injury Lawyer.
Slip and Fall accidents & Trip and fall
Grocery stores and Supermarkets are particularly problematic especially in the salad bar area or fruit and vegetable produce section in which there can be slip and fall accidents.
RI Slip and Fall on Ice and Snow Law | mall accident
”Rhode Island follows the “Connecticut Rule” when determining the duty of care to keep a premises safe from naturally occurring accumulations of ice and snow. SeeFuller v. Housing Authority of Providence, 108 R.I. 770, 774, 279 A.2d 438, 441 (1971). This rule, as we apply it, provides that a landlord or business invitor owes a duty to a tenant or business invitee 1292*1292 ”to use reasonable care to see that the common areas are kept reasonably safe from the dangers created by an accumulation of snow and ice which is attributed to purely natural causes.” Id. at 772, 279 A.2d at 440 (adopting the Connecticut Rule in the landlord-tenant context); see also Terry v. Central Auto Radiators, Inc., 732 A.2d 713, 716 (R.I.1999) (extending rule to business invitor-invitee relationship). The landlord or invitor, however, must be afforded “a reasonable time after the storm has ceased to remove the accumulation.”Benaski, 899 A.2d at 503 (quoting Fuller, 108 R.I. at 774, 279 A.2d at 441). Therefore, as a general rule, any duty to clear a natural accumulation of ice and snow is not triggered before a reasonable time after the storm ends. Id. Under unusual circumstances, however, the duty to remove the accumulation may arise before the end of the storm. Terry, 732 A.2d at 717.” Quote from : BERARDIS v. LOUANGXAY et al 969 A.2d 1288 (2009
Construction and Renovation accidents
It can also be problematic if there are renovations or construction ongoing at a shopping plaza because there may be scaffolding, scissor lifts or other dangerous construction equipment on the scene. This construction or equipment can include: Pavers, Concrete Equipment, cranes, forklifts, backhoes, sweepers, broom equipment, trucks, demolition equipment etc. https://www.osha.gov/oshstats/
Children and teens tend to gravitate towards attractive yet dangerous nuisances such as backhoes and scaffolding. There is also a risk of objects or construction material falling from a scaffold onto pedestrians below.
There have been instances of shoppers being trampled and killed as a result of a mob of unruly shoppers.
Elevator and Escalator Accident
there have been numerous reports of shoppers injured by defectively designed or maintained elevators and escalators. In some instances the owner of the property fails to maintain or inspect an escalator or elevator causing the elevator to fall. There have also been instances of someone’s foot , hand or leg getting seriously injured by being stuck in elevator. This type of mall accident is completely avoidable if the mall owner utilized reasonable care.
Tractor trailer, 18 wheeler truck accident
There are often tractor trailers at malls dropping off their loads of merchandise or consumer goods. It is not uncommon for these trucks to be involved in accidents at or near the mall. Some workers are injured while loading or unloading freight. These types of accidents can lead to both negligence and workers compensation claims.
Truck accidents in Rhode Island can sadly be fatal and lead to wrongful death litigation by the executor of the estate of the person killed in the deadly accident.
Many malls have indoor playgrounds, miniature golf or recreational centers for children to play in. These malls must take reasonable steps to protect children playing from foreseeable harm. There may also be defective or unreasonably dangerous playground rides that could cause injury to a child.
Legal Notice per Rules of Professional Responsibility: The Rhode Island Supreme Court licenses all lawyers and attorneys in the general practice of law, but does not license or certify any lawyer / attorney as an expert or specialist in any field of practice. While this firm maintains joint responsibility, most cases of this type are referred to other attorneys for principle responsibility.