I am wondering if it is possible to claim for slipping on a garage forecourt. I was recently filling up my vehicle on the grounds of a local fuel service station when I slipped on a pool of liquid. I suffered a serious back injury as a result of the fall. Am I entitled to pursue a claim for compensation?
You may be entitled to pursue a claim for compensation if you can prove that someone other than yourself was at least partly responsible for your injury. This person must have owed you a ‘duty of care’ – a responsibility to ensure your health and safety – at the time of the accident, and is most likely to be the garage’s management.
It is likely that the garage’s management is at least partially responsible for your accident as it has a duty to ensure the safety of all patrons on its premises. As part of its ‘duty of care’ a garage’s management is obliged to take measures to ensure that its forecourt is clear of obstructions and hazards. Although the garage’s ‘duty of care’ is not absolute – meaning that you must also take some responsibility for your health and safety – you may be eligible to pursue a claim for slipping on a garage forecourt if you can prove that the garage’s management failed to take measures to neutralise the threat posed by the pool of liquid in a ‘reasonable’ timeframe.
However, it could also be that the pool of liquid had been created a short time before you arrived at the forecourt. If this is the case and the garage’s management did not have a ‘reasonable’ window in which to clean the spill, you may not be entitled to claim for slipping on a garage forecourt.
Before considering whether or not you are entitled to pursue a claim you should ensure that you have had your injuries treated by a medical professional – no amount of injury compensation can make up for the impact a long-term back injury can have on your life. You should have summoned an ambulance to take you to the nearest hospital’s Accident and Emergency room as soon as your accident occurred. If you were unable to summon an ambulance you should have had someone else do it for you. If you not already had your injuries treated, you should make an appointment to see your local GP immediately.
Once you have had your injuries treated you should make an appointment to speak with a personal injury claims solicitor. A personal injury claims solicitor will be able to explain the claims process to you in detail, tell you whether or not you are entitled to pursue a claim for slipping on a garage forecourt and if so, help you execute your claim to ensure you are awarded your maximum possible entitlement.