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Shelf Collapses Can Cause Injury

Premises liability claims arise when a visitor sustains injuries due to a defect or hazard on another party’s property. This type of claim can involve many different types of accidents, including slip and falls, falls down stairs, and many more. While accidents and injuries can happen on any type of property, many cases involve hazards in retail stores, include groceries, “big box” stores, and similar establishments.

One particularly frightening and potentially dangerous type of accident that can occur is the collapse of shelving or part of a building. A recent incident in Boca Raton demonstrates how quickly devastating damage can occur when a shelf is not installed correctly or comes loose for another reason. On January 12th, several shelves collapsed at the Party City location in Boca Raton. As one witness described, the shelves were eight feet high and fell “like dominoes,” with merchandise also crashing to the ground. Three individuals sustained injuries in the accident, one of whom was stuck under a shelf for a short period of time. The Palm Beach Fire Rescue team reported to the scene to attend to any injured victims and search under the shelves and merchandise for anyone who may have been buried. Fortunately, no additional victims were found. The accident happened at 10 a.m., only 30 minutes after the store opened so there were fewer customers in the store than would have been at a later time in the day.

While the Party City incident did not cause any serious injuries, shelf collapses often result in much worse. For example, if shelves are solid or have heavier or dangerous merchandise such as electronics, appliances, or utensils, any customers in the vicinity can sustain devastating injuries including:

  • Broken or shattered bones;
  • Serious lacerations or contusions;
  • Traumatic brain injuries;
  • Spinal cord injuries; and/or
  • Crushed limbs.

Who Is Liable For Injuries Caused By Shelf Collapses?

Store owners have the duty to keep the premises in reasonably safe condition and to identify and eliminate hazards in a timely manner to keep customers free from harm. This includes regularly inspecting the premises for any potential dangers. If shelves are not properly installed, secured to the walls, inspected, or maintained, and a shelf collapses and causes injuries, the store owner should be held responsible. By bringing a premises liability claim against a negligent store owner, injured victims can often recover for losses including medical bills, pain and suffering, lost income, and more.

Contact An Experienced Boca Raton Premises Liability Attorney For Help

Premises liability cases can be very complicated and anyone who has been injured in a retail store, business, or on another person’s property should make sure they discuss their situation with a skilled premises liability lawyer as soon as possible. At the law firm of Lavalle, Brown & Ronan in Boca Raton, our highly experienced team of attorneys has represented clients following serious injuries due to hazardous property conditions. No matter what type of injury you have sustained, you should never hesitate to call for a free consultation at 888-646-1315 today.

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