We all know that in life, “poop happens”, and it does so quite literally at some PetSmart stores where customers are allowed to bring their pets inside. Unfortunately at a Newport News Virginia (VA) store a customer slipped and injured himself on dog waste. Holloway and his daughter were customers at the Jefferson Avenue store on Jan. 18, 2009. As he headed for the pet treats aisle, "my left foot slipped in a pile of dog feces that was not visible," Holloway said in a court affidavit.
"Upon slipping in the feces, I grabbed a hold of my daughter forcefully and wrenched my back," he said. "The dog feces in question were not open and obvious." Holloway had to have back surgery, in part because of the fall, he said in the suit. He sued for $1 million.
Our firm fully appreciates the challenges associated with slip and fall injury cases. The at-fault business owners are not eager to settle these claims and usually take them all the way to court.
Fortunately they reached an agreement this week to avoid trial, according to a notice filed Wednesday in U.S. District Court. Terms were not disclosed. But, PetSmart still denied any wrongdoing and said Holloway did not fall down and was not injured as a result of slipping.
This isn’t suprising but each year, countless Americans become injured from a slip and fall accident many times at a grocery store or retail location, which renders them unable to work. In fact, a full quarter of a million Americans have spinal injuries alone. I’m glad PetSmart settled and I hope the man recovers fully from his slip and fall accident.