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Super Saturday could be harmful to consumers

In what is poised to be the biggest shopping weekend of the holiday season, retailers appear to be ready to pull out all the stops to bring out shoppers. A number of stores are advertising their willingness to stay open continuously until Christmas Eve, and others are rolling out big discounts to get people off of their couches and into the stores.

In essence, it is almost like retailers are trying to top Black Friday sales, since this year’s bonanza appeared to fall flat given the additional spending money consumers should have given lower gas prices. But given the hype about “Super Saturday” we feel it prudent to discuss the obligations that retailers have to keep consumers safe.

Essentially, retailers are charged with taking reasonable care to ensure that consumers are not harmed as they shop on a retailer’s premises. This means that they must keep aisles free of debris and spills, heavy merchandise should be placed in areas where they will not fall on unsuspecting consumers and crowd control must be in place to ensure orderly ingress and egress from the store.

Should a spill occur, a store owner must use reasonable efforts to cordon off the area and clean it so that consumers are not injured. A retailer that fails to do so could be held liable if a consumer is injured.

We hope that consumers are able to find deals and that retailers get farther into the black. At the same time we hope that the season can be enjoyed without any major accidents or injuries

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