June 17, 2016

Client slipping on oily surface at petrol station receives compensation

While visiting a petrol station to fill up his car, our client suffered leg and hip injuries when he had the misfortune to slip on oily deposits due to a failure by the garage to carry out adequate cleaning and maintenance of the forecourt.

Before filling up his car, our client wished to get some disposable gloves from the dispenser situated on the pump ‘island’. The fact that the filling station had allowed a large, deep pool of rainwater, measuring about quarter of a metre by half a metre, to collect alongside the ‘island’ meant that our client had to circumnavigate this by stepping onto the ‘island’ in order to retrieve the gloves, not realising that spilt diesel left untreated had made its ceramic tiled surface a slip hazard.

Before instructing RWK Goodman, our client had lodged a complaint with the garage, and for his pains, had received in response a token £25. After receiving RWK Goodman’s formal letter of claim, the garage denied for some time that they were in any way to blame; they argued that they had carried out regular checks and attempted to rely on CCTV footage and risk assessments they had carried out.

In his claim for compensation, our client was represented by Louise Huckstep, solicitor in our Oxford Personal Injury team, who was able successfully to undermine the garage’s denial of liability in a number of ways. Notably it was pointed out to the garage that it had an inadequate, reactive (rather than proactive) approach to risk, had no hazard warnings in place, and had failed to re-apply non-slip paint to the ceramic tiles where this had worn away. Following this, the garage agreed they should compensate our client and a settlement of £5,250 was negotiated.

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