The festive season of personal injury nightmares
As the season of good will approaches personal injury solicitors across the land get ready to jump into action as the amount of no win, no fee claims come rolling in. Christmas is supposed to be about relaxing, having fun with kids and stuffing yourself silly with delicious treats. But the irony is that the festive season is actually more jam-packed with potential personal injuries than Santa's proverbial sack.
There are of course the obvious risks of getting pine needles stuck in your feet in a rush to unwrap presents on Christmas morning or getting salmonella poisoning because Aunty Vera has strived to cook dinner for 28 people in a tiny gas oven and has drastically underdone the turkey. Unfortunately, it is unlikely that you will be able to get a personal injury solicitor onto either of these cases. However, there are many other instances in which serious personal injuries may be suffered and subsequent compensation claims can be made.
Christmas shopping perils
Quite often the lead up to Christmas is far more enjoyable than the painstaking two days that you have to spend sitting around in a stuffy house listening to distant cousins that you would rather forget about bickering amongst themselves.
Nevertheless, pre-Christmas shopping and the post-Christmas sales can be an absolute health and safety nightmare. Relentless crowds push and shove, bringing the risk of personal injury; floors made sopping by the constant herds piling in and out make way for slipping accidents; and bounteous displays piled far too high run the risk of toppling over and causing a serious head injury to an unsuspecting customer.
The Claim Solicitors suggest that you avoid shopping at busier times such as the weekends, lunch times and the week just before Christmas. Either plan ahead or stick to the mornings or evenings when the shops are quieter and the risks of sustaining personal injuries are greatly reduced.
Seasonal road risks
The shops are a minefield and so too are the roads. Winter, particularly December - February, can be an extremely dangerous time to drive. Not only are the days shorter and the evenings longer and darker but there are far more car accident risks, such as black ice. While local councils strive to grit the roads before the onset of the rush hour traffic there are instances when they are too late or errors are made and a road forgotten. Winter 2005/2006 saw a number of fatal accidents caused by black ice.
Despite an influx of road safety warnings from the government there are also an abundance of drunk and fatigued drivers on our roads at Christmas time. Thousands travel cross-country to have turkey and crackers with relatives on the other side of the UK and get too weary to be able to maintain alertness on the roads.
Many also risk getting behind the wheel after having several too many at booze-fuelled office parties and attempt to drive with a heightened confidence and impaired judgement, making them far more likely to be involved in a drink-driving road accident that could cause them and their passenger to sustain whiplash injuries at the very least. These seasonal road risks mean that winter is one of the busiest times for personal injury solicitors who receive countless UK motor accident claims.
Ice skating injuries
If you were thinking of taking the kids on a trip to the local ice rink then beware because they are a personal injury haven. Well, it is unfair to say that they are all unsafe but they do offer a variety of hazards that you should consider.
Small, cramped ice rinks full of amateur skaters bombing around in boots with razor sharp blades are hardly the things that peaceful afternoons are made of. Many that are brave enough to venture onto the ice will experience falls simply because they lack experience/balance however some may experience personal injuries at the hands of the rink manager or event organiser.
It is the responsibility of the people who manage the ice rink to make sure that the boots they provide are in good condition, that their ice rink does not become over crowded and that the ice is regularly resurfaced. If they neglect any of these duties then they could face having an accident claim, under the representation of a specialist personal injury solicitor, made against them
When ice skating, it is a good idea to wear a hat to give you more protection from sustaining a head injury if you fall and also wear gloves to give you some protection from hand injuries caused by the cold ice or sharp blades. Those that fall should take care to keep their fingers tucked in and get up off the ice as quickly as possible in order to avoid the risk of sustaining serious personal injuries.
Defective toy hazards
Now that we have almost completely forgotten the religious meaning behind Christmas it has very much become a time for kids and guaranteed your brood will have a present list as long as both of your arms.
However, when you are purchasing gifts this Christmas make sure that you take extra care to buy toys that meet European standards and display a CE marking. Some unscrupulous manufacturers and retailers put toys which seem like bargains, but are in fact unsafe and ultimately unsuitable for children, on the shelves and unsuspecting consumers are tempted to fill their trolleys.
According to the Toy Safety Regulations, 1995, all toys must satisfy basic safety requirements and any retailer found selling toys that do not meet these requirements could face a fine of as much as £5,000, having a product liability claim made against them or even a prison sentence.
Electrical fault dangers
Christmas simply wouldn't be Christmas without paper chains hanging from every pillar and post, baubles balancing precariously on tatty tree branches, and lights rimming every window. But some people tend to take decorating to the absolute limit, covering each available bare surface of their house, including their roofs and front lawns, with imitation Santas in present clad, reindeer lead sleighs; dancing snowmen; sparkly snowflakes and more.
While some argue that this is the season to be jolly and this is all in the name of fun and frolics and others claim that these OTT decorations are a tasteless eye saw that lower property prices, we would like to remind that large quantities of Christmas lights simply spell danger. You risk overloading your power supply and could end up with an electrical fire on your hands. Be very careful when you purchase your lights; make sure that they meet safety standards and that they are resistant to water if being used outside.
The days of wooden trucks and simple rag dolls are long gone and it is more than likely that your kids' stockings will be stuffed with Gameboys, Mp3 players and other electrical goodies. If any of these are defective then your child could be at risk of sustaining burn injuries or worse.
If you, your child, or anyone else you know sustains personal injuries as a result a faulty electrical product this Christmas, then you do not even have to prove that you purchased it. All you need to do is find yourself a good no win, no fee personal injury solicitor and provide evidence that the defective product was the cause of your injury.
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