Personal Injuries
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D. Slip and fall accident

In all circumstances, an occupier (that is a person in possession of or enjoying the premises otherwise than as a mere servant) of any premises owes a duty to all his visitors to take such care as is reasonable to see that the visitor will be reasonably safe while using the premises for the purposes for which he is invited or permitted by the occupier to be there.  An occupier must be prepared for children to be less careful than adults.

The burden of proof lies with the injured person who must show on the balance of probability that the slip and fall accident happened due to negligence on the part of the occupier(s).

An occupier does not have an absolute duty to ensure that the floor is clean and dry at all times. Occupiers cannot be expected to have members of staff permanently stationed at designated areas to watch out for any spillages and to clean it up immediately as it occurs.  The law requires an occupier to set up a reasonable and proper system of cleaning the premises and to take reasonable care for the safety of visitors to the premises and take reasonable steps to ensure that the cleaning work is done properly.  For example, keeping the floor dry at the entrance of a shopping centre on a rainy day is not practicable, but so long as the occupiers are reasonable, then their duties would have been fulfilled e.g. placing warning signs to warn the passengers of slippery floors and organising their staff to mop the wet floor regularly (obviously that would depend on reasonableness and the facts of the case).

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