Anna Manning, a 60 year old woman slipped and fell on a cooked potato wedge in Dunnes Stores in Clondalkin, Dublin in November 2011 when she injured her back and left wrist. The court heard how Manning had been walking towards the fish section of the store when she slipped and fell forward onto her hands and knees.
Anna Manning went home after the incident but she had to attend her GP the following day as she was suffering pain to her back and neck.
Manning sued Dunnes Stores for negligence and Dunnes Stores denied liability claiming that she was guilty of contributory negligence. Dunnes Stores entered a full defence to Manning’s claim.
The court heard how Manning had a history of neck and back pain but this pain had been aggravated by the incident and that she was suffering from on-going wrist pain.
Justice Raymond Groarke, Circuit Court President heard that although the back pain had reverted back to the way it was before the incident the pain in her wrist continued and this had disrupted her everyday life.
Justice Groarke heard how that day potato wedges had been spilled close to where the incident occurred and that it was likely that she had slipped on a “brother or sister” of the wedges which had been cleaned up earlier.
Dunnes Stores’ allegation of contributory negligence was rejected and Ms Manning was awarded €22,900 in damages.
The above case illustrates how stores have a clear duty of care towards their customers. It further illustrates how the courts will take all evidence into consideration especially where a claim has been fully denied by the defendants.
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