If you’re like many Americans, you headed to the mall the day after Thanksgiving to take advantage of the bargain offers. Maybe you even camped out in line the night before. This post-Thanksgiving shopping extravaganza is becoming almost as much of a tradition as the holiday itself.
Black Friday was originally so named because it represented the day of the year that put retailers “in the black”—i.e., operating at a profit. Nowadays, however, the name has gained a second meaning—referring to the high incidence of violence and accidents that occur on this day.
If you were injured in a Black Friday incident, you have legal recourse to claim compensation for your pain and suffering. Firstly, it’s important to understand the liability in your case: whether the store, another customer—or both—were at fault in causing your accident.
All stores are required by law to uphold certain safety standards to prevent injury to their customers—or provide clear warning of any safety hazards. If you fall on a staircase with a broken railing—or slip on a wet floor without proper signage warning of the hazard—you could take the retailer to court.
Most Black Friday accidents, however, are caused by other shoppers. On this day in particular, shoppers become frantic and cut-throat. Fights often break out in stores—which may involve punching, stabbing or even shooting. In addition, the frenzy of large crowds poses another safety threat. Shoppers have been trampled—sometimes to death—at Black Friday events.
It’s worth noting that Black Friday accidents don’t only occur at shopping centers—they can also occur on the drive home. Since many Black Friday shoppers wait in line all night to shop, they tend to be sleep-deprived—and functioning only on adrenaline—during the shopping day. When such exhausted drivers get behind the wheel, it often leads to devastating accidents.
If you have suffered injury in a Black Friday accident, you should first seek medical attention immediately. Then, talk with an experienced personal injury attorney about your legal options to seek justice.