The holiday retail sale has become a popular trend among some Americans in recent years, and while shopping is normally a relatively safe activity, shopping this time of year has become something of a free-for-all. The media is full of instances showing mob-like groups rushing through barricades and even fighting with each other in an effort to purchase a specific product. In some cases, injuries have occurred, which have become horrific and even deadly in nature. Retaining the services of an experienced personal injury attorney can be necessary to ensure that an injured individual is compensated for injuries suffered at the hands of another person.
This past Thanksgiving, a member of the U.S. Military was shot and killed by local law enforcement at an Alabama mall in an apparent case of mistaken identity. As details have come out, it seems apparent that the victim was targeted by police who believed he was the gunman because he was brandishing a weapon as he was exiting the mall. Unfortunately, after the excitement of the Christmas season subsides, the reality is that these events do, in some cases, cause injuries. A discussion of retail rage, including what shopkeepers must do to keep the peace, as well as some common holiday retail sale injuries, will follow below.
Typically the busiest shopping weekend of the year, Thanksgiving weekend, in recent years, has seen an increasing number of incidents resulting in injuries. Analysts have studied why injuries occur during the holiday season and determined the unique characteristics of Thanksgiving weekend retail sale promotions, and the frantic retail environment they create, are the primary cause. During this weekend, retailers heavily promote their most desirable items at deeply-discounted prices to encourage more foot traffic. However, as distinguished from many other sales, at this time of year, retailers restrict the supply, leading to aggressive consumer behavior for the few items available.
Additionally, another key ingredient is Thanksgiving itself, which lends itself to sleep deprivation. This phenomenon is exacerbated by the timing of the sales, which typically begin at midnight or early in the morning and require eager customers to camp outside a store all night. As a result, many consumers are functioning in a heightened aggravated state and with little sleep, resulting in grumpy moods and bad decisions which manifest in a mob-like behavior.
Behavior has deviated enough from normal situations that the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) now requires retail employers to take certain safety precautions to prevent injury during major sales events. Serving to protect shoppers and employees during times of increased traffic flow, OSHA’s guidelines for a crowd management plan include:
Unfortunately, not all procedures will prevent injuries, and some of the more common ways in which holiday retail sale injuries occur include:
If you suffered an injury while shopping at a holiday retail sale, contact an experienced personal injury attorney as soon as possible. The skilled DuPage County personal injury attorneys at Mevorah Law Office, LLC have years of experience in personal injury matters, including those sustained at retail establishments. If your injury was preventable and attributable to another person, we will work to ensure that you get the money you deserve. Contact the personal injury firm at 630-932-9100 for a free consultation.
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