You can’t go to any corner of Philadelphia without passing a Sunoco gas station. Those bright red, blue, and yellow signs and awnings are hard to miss. Hundreds of local drivers make pitstops every day for some fuel for the car and some fuel in the form of snacks and drinks for the body.
With all the services these “service stations” provide it’s not hard to imagine all the foot traffic that comes through, and the potential hazards they leave behind. A dropped cup of ice on the floor or cracked pavement in the parking lot can send you into a slip-and-fall or a trip and leave you reaching for a painful injury on your legs, hips, arms, or head. You may also wonder how easy it would be to get help with recovery from an injury from a big chain like Sunoco.
Gas Station Accident Liability in Philadelphia
There are 20 or more Sunoco stations across Philadelphia. They’ve been serving city drivers for over a century now. In fact, Sunoco’s original parent company opened its first service station right outside Philadelphia back in 1920. Now it’s a company network of over seven thousand stations.
They invite a lot of customers into their stores and onto their property each day and that means they’re required to show a “duty of care” to every visitor. The legal requirement means they must make each step safe for customers, from the parking lot, into the store, and all the way back to the bathrooms.
They can face premises liability and have to support victims after accidents under certain conditions. If owners and proprietors create a hazard and don’t clean it up or repair it they can face liability. Or if a customer creates a hazard and store employees don’t clean-up or repair it in a reasonable amount of time they can face liability.
Store proprietors or Sunoco lawyers can try to deny your claim by saying that they didn’t know about the issue, but any business is required to regularly check for hazards and can still be responsible if they fail to catch a danger. Soap on a bathroom floor should never sit long enough for you to come along and slip. Oil from cars should never be allowed to build up and take you down in a fall. Cola spills should never sit out on a hard floor long enough for you to step in the puddle and take a tumble.
What to Do After a Slip-And-Fall at a Sunoco
To have the best chance of building a strong case you’ll need to start collecting evidence right after an incident if you’re able. Here are a few actions to take and details to gather at the scene:
- Don’t declare that you are all right — Statements like “It’s my fault,” or “I’m OK,“ can be used to suggest you’re faking your injuries later. In fact, injuries can often go unnoticed until the day after a fall. Suddenly you’ve got extreme pain in a limb or your neck or head. Don’t make any comments about your injuries, because you may have no idea if you are hurt or not.
- Seek Medical Attention – If you need it, call for an ambulance. Don’t try to get up if you can’t. Tell EMS crews about everything that hurts.
- Take photos — Use your cell phone to record the hazard that caused your fall. If you can’t move around ask someone nearby to help you take photos or video. The obstacle won’t be there for long once you leave.
- Alert a Sunoco manager – Edith Pearce of the Pearce Law Firm P.C. always says “Make sure you let someone know what happened where it happened.” The store will need to make an accident report. This report will be valuable evidence for you later.
- Reach out to witnesses – Ask witnesses what they saw and get their contact information. They may not have seen you fall but can attest to the dangerous conditions that sent you to the ground.
- Save receipts – If you had already purchased something from the store save the receipt as proof of what time you were there.
- See your doctor – Get checked out by a physician. Get injuries documented and get any new aches and pains looked at.
Contact a Philadelphia Gas Station Slip-And-Fall Lawyer
In Pennsylvania slip-and-fall, victims have up to 24 months from the time of the accident to file a claim over their injuries. You may want to wait to file a claim for damages, but you should proceed with your lawsuit against Sunoco as soon as you’re ready. Your attorney will be gathering evidence and collecting documents and the process will be much easier the sooner you allow them to start.
After any accident involving a fall and serious injuries, contact a highly rated Philadelphia Slip-and-Fall Accident Lawyer such as Edith Pearce. Unlike the huge firms with dozens of attorneys handling different aspects of your case, Edith Pearce is personally involved in every case that we handle. She genuinely cares about her clients and you will not be treated like just another case or file.