Case Study: Broken Left Wrist After Slip at a Petrol Station

Mrs S was awarded £15,500

A woman has been awarded £15,500 in compensation after she slipped and broke her wrist at a petrol station.

The claim

Mrs S was filling her car up at a petrol station with a “pay at pump” facility, when an elderly couple struggling to use the facility asked for her help.  She went to assist and in doing so, slipped on a diesel-like substance spilled on a tiled area she walked across.  Mrs S fell to the ground, breaking her left wrist. 

The case

Mrs S made a claim for her injuries and was put in touch with JMW Solicitors where Jason Harwood, Partner, handled her case.  He wrote a letter of claim to the supermarket that owned the petrol station, the defendant, whose claims department responded. 

Jason obtained witness statements from the couple that Mrs S tried to assist.  These statements supported Mrs S’s story; that the couple were at the pump in front of her, and to reach them Mrs S had to walk on a raised, tiled area.  Jason disclosed these statements to the defendant’s representative. 

Defendant’s failure to respond

The defendant’s legal representative had not responded and Jason pressed them to come back to him urgently.  He also requested several documents to establish what procedures the supermarket had in place for cleaning and maintenance. 

They still did not respond, so Jason notified them of his intention to make a court application to make them respond.  The defendant’s representative then responded, requesting if they could have longer to investigate the case.  He refused and continued with the application. 

The defendant instructed a solicitor, who ensured that Jason received copies of the documents he requested.  The defendant’s solicitor also said they were disputing liability for the accident. 

Next steps

The defendant’s solicitor disputed that Mrs S had fallen due to the defendant’s neglect.  They overlooked Jason’s witness evidence but did not produce evidence suggesting the forecourt was checked.  Jason pressed them for more evidence about the cleaning schedule on the day. 

After a lengthy wait, the defendant’s legal representative responded with a checklist for cleaning the petrol forecourt and witness statements from the cleaning manager and a petrol station attendant.  However, there was no information relating to the person responsible for checking the area that day.     

Gathering supporting evidence

Jason started to get medical evidence. He requested a copy of Mrs S’s medical records and arranged for Mrs S to see an independent Consultant Orthopaedic Surgeon to prepare a report on her injuries. 

The report confirmed Mrs S’s injuries, and highlighted that she had experienced additional strain and a soft tissue injury around her left hip.  It suggested that Mrs S’s injuries may lead to degenerative changes in her wrist, but that it wouldn’t become any worse. 

Jason put together a Schedule of Loss, outlining the quantifiable losses Mrs S had suffered as a result of her accident.  Once Mrs S had approved the Schedule of Loss, Jason submitted a copy of this and the medical report to the defendant’s legal representatives, inviting them to settle Mrs S’s claim. 

Court Proceedings

The defendant’s legal representative refused to settle the case and continued to deny liability, so Jason started court proceedings against them. 

While Jason was preparing documentation for Mrs S’s case, he received notification from the defendant’s solicitor requesting to resolve the case.  They made an offer to settle the case, however Jason felt this was low and advised Mrs S to make a counter offer.  Mrs S did so, and after negotiation, both sides agreed a figure of £15,500. 

Mrs S was delighted with Jason’s work on the case.  She stated that “Mr Harwood was very good.  He kept me informed at all times.  He couldn’t have been more helpful.”

Have you also suffered a slip or trip due to someone else's negligence?

Call us on 0800 054 6570 or fill in our contact form to discuss whether you have a claim.

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