Shopping isn’t typically considered a risky pastime. But Black Friday and the beginning of holiday shopping can be life-threatening. There’s even a website – Black Friday Death Count – that tallies the number of fatalities and injuries that occur because of the bedlam that surrounds this shopping holiday. Even knowing the dangers, people still head out into the hysteria for the thrill, the buys, or just to have a story to tell. The National Retail Federation reports that on Black Friday last year, more than 90 million people shopped in-store and online. If you’re going to stay safe, you’ve got to depend on your own wits, whether you’re on foot or in your car. Here are some tips to keep you and yours safe.
The most enthusiastic Black Friday shoppers wake before the dawn to reach their destination, and some even begin their excursion the night before. You might be on a coffee and adrenaline high, but lack of sleep and a caffeine crash mean you’re not quite as alert as you could be. Be aware of your surroundings and don’t get distracted. This especially means staying off of your phone when you’re driving to or from your destination and keeping your phone stashed away when you’re walking anywhere as well.
The “gotta have it, gotta get it first” attitude that pervades Black Friday is contagious, and it can cause people to act rashly, inappropriately, and just plain stupidly. Be patient. Stand in line where you’re supposed to, follow the rules a store has put in place, and just deal with it if you miss out on a great deal or a store runs out of stock. Hot tempers are contagious too, and the last thing anyone needs or wants is a fistfight, knife fight, or gun fight in line.
You can hope that the stores you choose to frequent on Black Friday will have safety measures in place like sturdy barriers, clear signage, and security. After all, they face liability for Black Friday shopping injuries on the premises. Some stores, alas, treat Black Friday and the whole of holiday shopping season like every other day of the year – a fatal mistake. No matter how an enterprise preps for Black Friday, you can’t account for the behavior of other rowdy shoppers. They exist and you’ll encounter them if you’re headed out to malls and shops the day after Thanksgiving. From falling merchandise to stampedes, the hazards are there. Keep your
Take Your Time
If you want to experience Black Friday in all its glory but you don’t have the bug that requires you to be there as the doors open, then act on that. Wait until the initial rush has died down before you head out into the fray in order to snag some good deals. The craziest of shoppers will have come and gone, and the merchandise you want is still likely to be available. Just keep your eyes peeled on the roads – frantic pedestrians aren’t the only shoppers out, there will be frantic, distracted drivers too.
If you or a shopping comrade have been injured because of a store’s negligence or the actions of another shopper, contact Femminineo Attorneys PLLC to speak with personal injury attorney David C. Femminineo about your case.