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Pennsylvania Slip and Fall Accidents at Public Establishments: How to Prove Notice (Part A)

Slip and fall accidents happen at many public establishments, such as supermarkets, restaurants, train stations, and department stores.  The fall can be caused by various dangerous tripping conditions such as:

  • puddles of liquid,
  • debris,
  • produce at a grocery store, or even
  • excess polishing wax on the floor.

In Pennsylvania, public establishments have a duty to protect their customers from dangerous conditions on the premises, as well as activities carried out on the premises.

Pursuant to Restatement (Second) of Torts Section 343, the establishments are subject to liability for their customers' injuries due a dangerous condition if they:

(a) know or by the exercise of reasonable care would discover the conditions, and should realize that it involves an unreasonable risk of harm to such invitees;

(b) should expect that they[customers] will not discover or realize the danger, or will fail to protect themselves against it; and

(c) fail to exercise reasonable care to protect them[customers] against the danger

Parts A and B of this article will only discuss section (a), which deals with notice of the dangerous condition to a possessor of land or a public establishment.

Dangerous Condition Created By Actions of Public Establishments

If the public establishment creates the dangerous condition by its actions, it is not necessary for the injured customer to prove that the public establishment had notice of the slipping hazard or dangerous condition.

For example, Philadelphia Gas Works (PGW) creates a hole on a public sidewalk to check out a pipe, fails to put warnings signs around the hole and leaves the hole without patching it.  The next day, a pedestrian falls into the hole and gets injured.  In this situation, the pedestrian would not need to prove that PGW had notice of the hole because PGW created the hole.

Help After PA Slip and Fall Accident:

Slip and fall accidents can significantly affect your daily life.  If you were injured at a public establishment, you probably incurred various medical bills and expenses.  You may recover your bills and expenses from the public establishment.  For more information, feel free to contact our Pennsylvania slip and fall lawyers at 877.944.8396.  We also help injured individuals as a result of slip and fall accidents in New Jersey.

Click here to access Part B of this article regarding actual and constructive notice in Pennsylvania slip and fall accidents.

Related Slip and Fall Accident Articles

*Published: 8-22-2012

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