Produce Vendor Found Liable For Slip and Fall Injury Involving Dropped Grape


Reasons for judgement were released today by the BC Supreme Court, Vancouver Registry, finding a produce vendor liable for injuries sustained when a shopper slipped and fell on a dropped grape.
In today’s case (Davis v. Kin’s Farm Market) the 75 year Plaintiff was shopping in Lynn Valley Mall in North Vancouver.  As he walked “past the fruit and vegetable display tables located outside of Kin’s Market, he slipped and fell on a green grape“.
The grape was just outside of Kin’s Market in an area that was “encroaching somewhat into the marbled tiles forming the mall pedestrian corridor“.   The Plaintiff sued the owner of the Mall and the produce store.
The Defendants argued that the Plaintiff was at fault for his injuries and that they were not responsible because they had a reasonable system to deal with hazards on the floor.  However, this was contradicted by a witness who gave evidence that “several hours after the ambulance took (the Plaintiff) away”  there were “more grapes on the marble tiles immediately outside the store”  and that after bringing these grapes to the attention to the employee in charge of Kin’s Market “this employee took no steps to clean up the grapes“.
Madam Justice Bruce went on to find both Defendants liable for the Plaintiff’s injuries.  Specifically the Court reasoned as follows:

[39] In addition to having no reasonable system of inspection and maintenance in place to address spills from the bins and display tables outside the store, I find that the employees were not complying with the standards set by their employer on the day of the accident. Ms. Janda’s evidence tends to show that the employees of Kin’s Market were lax in regard to the cleanliness of the areas surrounding the bins. While evidence of a failure to comply with the cleaning policies well prior to the date of the accident cannot be used to infer such a failure on the date of the accident, in this case there is evidence that just hours after Mr. Davis’ fall there were more grapes on the marble tiles adjacent to the bins displayed by Kin’s Market. This evidence suggests that the employees of Kin’s Market had rather poor powers of observation. Moreover, the fact that on two occasions on June 5, 2005, employees of Kin’s Market took no steps to clean up fallen grapes after the spills were brought to their attention strongly suggests that they took no responsibility for any produce that landed beyond the brick tiles.

[40] Lastly, Kin’s Market argues that even if it failed to meet the standard of care owed as an occupier, the fact that the Owner met this standard removes any responsibility they may have for the accident. I am unable to accept this argument. Where there are two occupiers of premises, each of them owes a duty of care to persons invited to enter the premises. The fact that the Owner may rebut a prima facie breach of the Act does not obviate the necessity for Kin’s Market to also satisfy the two pronged test articulated by the Court of Appeal inAtkins. Permitting grapes to remain on the floor as a hazard is negligent absent proof that a reasonable system of maintenance and inspection was in place and being followed on the day of the accident. Kin’s Market has failed to satisfy this onus and it is irrelevant whether the Owner has led evidence that shows it met the required standard of care.

The Court went on to find that the Plaintiff was not at fault for falling reasoning as follows:

[60] Kin’s Market argues that Mr. Davis had an obligation to keep a proper look out for his own safety and to be aware of his surroundings: Gervais v. Do, 2000 BCSC 1271, [2000] B.C.J. No. 1732. Kin’s Market points to Mr. Davis’ admission that his attention was not directed to where he was walking before he fell; rather, he was looking toward the Shoppers Drug Mart. He was familiar with the mall and could have avoided the fall had he been paying attention to the floor where he was walking…

[62] In my view, it is not reasonable to expect Mr. Davis to be staring at his feet as he walked through the mall towards the Shoppers Drug Mart. Had he positioned his head in a downward direction to detect possible hazards on the floor, Mr. Davis may have stepped over the grapes in his path; however, he may also have run into another mall patron possibly causing damage to himself and the other person. It is also understandable that Mr. Davis would not be cognizant of the risks associated with walking in the common area of the mall adjacent to Kin’s Market, particularly as he was three to four feet from the display tables. He was not inside the store where he may have been alerted to the possibility of produce that had fallen to the floor. Lastly, I find Mr. Davis’ circumstances are similar to that found by the Court of Appeal in Coulson. The tenants in the mall design their displays to attract customers’ eyes. They do not encourage patrons to keep their eyes on the floor ahead of their feet. As Bauman J. (as he then was) said in Dufty v. Great Pacific Industries Inc., 2000 BCSC 1474, [2000] B.C.J. No. 1988 at para. 44:

[44]      As to the issue of contributory negligence, it has been said many times, most recently by Justice Burnyeat in Coleman v. Yen Hoy Ent. et al, 2000 BCSC 276 [In Chambers], that while there is a duty on the plaintiff to be aware of her surroundings, it is not the case that she is required to “glue her eyes to the ground.”

Davis v. Kin's Farm Market, Madam Justice Bruce, negligence claims, Occupier's Liability, occupier's liability lawsuits, produce accidents, slip and fall, Slip and Fall Accidents

Comments (46)

  • Amazing timing. My widowed 75 year old Mom has a “Discovery” tomorrow morning for an identical incident which occured in Langley two years ago and resulted in a broken knee cap. She has been treated like a criminal by the Defendant and not given much hope by her week kneed representation. When I found this posting it completely lifted her spirits and has empowered her perspective. I live 5,000 miles away and was feeling so frustrated until I read this material. Thank you and keep up the good work.
    Namaste
    PS: Any advice on representation for this type of injury case welcome.

  • Amazing timing. My widowed 75 year old Mom has a “Discovery” tomorrow morning for an identical incident which occured in Langley two years ago and resulted in a broken knee cap. She has been treated like a criminal by the Defendant and not given much hope by her week kneed representation. When I found this posting it completely lifted her spirits and has empowered her perspective. I live 5,000 miles away and was feeling so frustrated until I read this material. Thank you and keep up the good work.
    Namaste
    PS: Any advice on representation for this type of injury case welcome.

  • Thanks for visiting and for your comment.
    I’m sorry to hear about your Mom’s injuries and her experience with her claim. The civil litigation process can certainly be unpleasant at times.
    If you or your Mom need claim specific advice feel free to contact me confidentially via e-mail by filling out the form at the following link:
    http://www.bc-injury-law.com/contact.htm
    Yours truly,
    Erik Magraken

  • Thanks for visiting and for your comment.
    I’m sorry to hear about your Mom’s injuries and her experience with her claim. The civil litigation process can certainly be unpleasant at times.
    If you or your Mom need claim specific advice feel free to contact me confidentially via e-mail by filling out the form at the following link:
    http://www.bc-injury-law.com/contact.htm
    Yours truly,
    Erik Magraken

  • I simply want to mention I’m beginner to blogs and truly loved you’re page. Almost certainly I’m going to bookmark your blog . You absolutely have perfect articles. Thanks a bunch for revealing your blog.

  • As I web-site possessor I believe the content material here is rattling fantastic , appreciate it for your hard work. You should keep it up forever! Good Luck.

  • Great site. A lot of helpful info here. I am sending it to some buddies ans additionally sharing in delicious. And naturally, thank you for your sweat!

  • I realized more new stuff on this weight-loss issue. 1 issue is that good nutrition is extremely vital if dieting. A tremendous reduction in junk food, sugary meals, fried foods, sweet foods, red meat, and whitened flour products may perhaps be necessary. Keeping wastes parasites, and contaminants may prevent aims for losing weight. While a number of drugs in the short term solve the condition, the nasty side effects will not be worth it, and they also never provide more than a short lived solution. It can be a known idea that 95% of fad diets fail. Thanks for sharing your opinions on this site.

  • Thanks for your posting on the vacation industry. We would also like to include that if you’re a senior thinking of traveling, it’s absolutely imperative that you buy travel insurance for elderly people. When traveling, older persons are at high risk of experiencing a professional medical emergency. Obtaining right insurance plan package for your age group can protect your health and provide you with peace of mind.

  • Thank you a lot for sharing this with all folks you actually realize what you are speaking about! Bookmarked. Kindly also consult with my site =). We could have a hyperlink exchange arrangement between us!

  • Hi there, just became aware of your blog through Google, and found that it is really informative. I’m gonna watch out for brussels. I’ll appreciate if you continue this in future. Many people will be benefited from your writing. Cheers!

  • Hi! I could have sworn I’ve been to this blog before but after browsing through some of the post I realized it’s new to me. Anyhow, I’m definitely glad I found it and I’ll be book-marking and checking back frequently!

  • You could definitely see your enthusiasm in the work you write. The world hopes for even more passionate writers like you who aren’t afraid to say how they believe. Always follow your heart.

  • Howdy this is somewhat of off topic but I was wondering if blogs use WYSIWYG editors or if you have to manually code with HTML. I’m starting a blog soon but have no coding knowledge so I wanted to get guidance from someone with experience. Any help would be greatly appreciated!

  • hello there and thank you on your information – I’ve certainly picked up something new from proper here. I did on the other hand expertise several technical issues using this web site, since I skilled to reload the web site a lot of occasions previous to I may get it to load correctly. I had been pondering in case your web host is OK? No longer that I’m complaining, but slow loading cases instances will sometimes have an effect on your placement in google and could harm your high quality rating if ads and ***********|advertising|advertising|advertising and *********** with Adwords. Anyway I am including this RSS to my e-mail and could glance out for a lot more of your respective intriguing content. Make sure you replace this again soon..

  • Hi, i think that i saw you visited my blog so i came to “return the favor”.I’m attempting to find things to enhance my website!I suppose its ok to use some of your ideas!!

  • Hello there, simply became alert to your blog thru Google, and found that it’s really informative. I am gonna be careful for brussels. I will appreciate should you continue this in future. Lots of folks shall be benefited from your writing. Cheers!

  • Fantastic goods from you, man. I’ve understand your stuff previous to and you are just extremely excellent. I really like what you have acquired here, certainly like what you’re stating and the way in which you say it. You make it enjoyable and you still take care of to keep it smart. I can’t wait to read much more from you. This is actually a tremendous web site.

  • You have noted very interesting points ! ps nice internet site . “Formal education will make you a living self-education will make you a fortune.” by Jim Rohn.

  • What’s Taking place i’m new to this, I stumbled upon this I have discovered It absolutely useful and it has helped me out loads. I’m hoping to give a contribution & help other customers like its helped me. Good job.

  • Today, with all the fast way of life that everyone is having, credit cards have a big demand throughout the economy. Persons from every area are using credit card and people who are not using the credit card have lined up to apply for just one. Thanks for revealing your ideas on credit cards.

  • I’m impressed, I have to say. Actually rarely do I encounter a weblog that’s both educative and entertaining, and let me tell you, you’ve hit the nail on the head. Your idea is outstanding; the issue is one thing that not enough persons are speaking intelligently about. I’m very happy that I stumbled across this in my search for something referring to this.

  • Hey very nice site!! Guy .. Excellent .. Superb .. I’ll bookmark your web site and take the feeds additionally…I’m satisfied to seek out a lot of useful info right here in the submit, we’d like work out extra strategies on this regard, thank you for sharing.

  • Hello, i read your blog from time to time and i own a similar one and i was just curious if you get a lot of spam remarks? If so how do you protect against it, any plugin or anything you can recommend? I get so much lately it’s driving me crazy so any help is very much appreciated.

  • Along with every little thing which appears to be developing throughout this specific area, all your viewpoints tend to be rather radical. However, I am sorry, because I do not give credence to your whole strategy, all be it exciting none the less. It seems to everyone that your commentary are generally not completely validated and in actuality you are generally yourself not entirely convinced of the point. In any case I did appreciate looking at it.

  • Thanks for your valuable post. As time passes, I have come to understand that the actual symptoms of mesothelioma are caused by this build up connected fluid between your lining in the lung and the chest muscles cavity. The infection may start within the chest area and spread to other body parts. Other symptoms of pleural mesothelioma cancer include fat loss, severe deep breathing trouble, nausea, difficulty swallowing, and infection of the neck and face areas. It ought to be noted that some people with the disease don’t experience virtually any serious symptoms at all.

  • Thanks a lot for sharing this with all of us you actually know what you’re talking about! Bookmarked. Please also visit my website =). We could have a link exchange arrangement between us!

  • Youre so cool! I dont suppose Ive learn anything like this before. So good to find any person with some authentic thoughts on this subject. realy thank you for starting this up. this web site is something that is wanted on the internet, someone with somewhat originality. useful job for bringing one thing new to the web!

  • Wow! This blog looks just like my old one! It’s on a entirely different topic but it has pretty much the same page layout and design. Wonderful choice of colors!

Comments are closed.

Contact

If you would like further information or require assistance, please get in touch.

ERIK
MAGRAKEN

Personal Injury Lawyer

When not writing the BC Injury Law Blog, Erik is the managing partner at MacIsaac & Company, based in Victoria, B.C. He is also involved with combative sports regulatory issues and authors the Combat Sports Law Blog.

“Work hard, be kind and enjoy the ride!”
Erik’s Philosophy

Disclaimer