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How fast should stores clean up spills?

On Behalf of | Jun 26, 2020 | Slip And Fall Injuries

It’s clear that a store owner cannot clean up a spill instantly. Say a customer drops a glass bottle of liquid on the floor, it shatters, and then the customer hurries off to avoid having to pay. If another person walks down the aisle thirty seconds later and slips on that wet spot, the store owner probably does not even know that it exists yet. 

This is important because one of the qualifications for a slip-and-fall lawsuit is that the property owner knew about the hazard prior to the accident. The basis of the lawsuit by the injured person is that the owner was allegedly neglectful by not cleaning the spill up in time, and therefore subjecting the victim to unwanted danger. 

There is another side to this. Even if the owner did not know about the issue, if it had existed for long enough that they should have known, they can still be liable. If the spill happened and then the owner neglected to clean the store for 24 hours, leading to a fall the next day, that person may argue that normal, expected cleaning would have caught it. 

So, how fast does the staff need to clean up the spill? They should attempt to do it as fast as is reasonably possible. This is different in every case. The determining factor is just whether or not the hazard existed for long enough that someone should have found it and rectified it before the accident. There is no specific amount of time that has been listed, and that can make cases like this get a bit complex. 

If you get injured in one of these accidents, you may have a right to compensation and you need to know what steps to take. in order to make a claim. An attorney with experience handling slip-and-fall injuries can help you determine your legal options.