Restaurants, cafes and bars are generally fast-moving environments with staff walking quickly and carrying food and drinks. With such busyness, however, comes an increased risk of hazards arising which could cause injury to customers, delivery workers or staff.

Therese Classon, a Partner in the Personal Injury team at WBW Solicitors in Newton Abbot, explains how slips, trips and falls can commonly occur in a restaurant setting and outlines your options if this happens to you.

Slips, trips or falls can happen in a number of ways in a café, bar or restaurant setting, usually because:

  • spilt food or drink was not cleaned up in a timely fashion, or adequately signposted as a hazard, and causes you to slip;
  • items such as deliveries, empty boxes, canteen caddies, cleaning equipment or loose wires left in public walkways can lead to you tripping over;
  • badly fitted or maintained floor tiles or carpets can cause you to fall; or
  • poor lighting can cause accidents in areas with steps or low ceilings.

Such accidents can result in a variety of different injuries, ranging from bruises, sprains and lacerations, to fractured or broken bones, a slipped disk or even brain or spinal damage.

Whether you are a customer, staff member, or outside contractor such as a delivery driver, the person in control of the restaurant has a legal duty under health and safety laws to take reasonable steps to keep you safe. If they fail in that duty and you are injured as a result, they may be found to be negligent and you might have a valid claim for compensation.

How our personal injury solicitors can help

If you have been injured as a result of a slip, trip or fall in a café, bar or restaurant, you should consult one of our experienced personal injury lawyers as soon as possible after your accident, while events are still fresh in your mind and in those of potential witnesses.

We will advise you on whether you may be eligible to make a claim for compensation.  If so, we will help you gather the evidence you need to strengthen your case which could include:

  • photographs of the scene and your injuries;
  • CCTV footage of the incident;
  • names and contact details of any potential witnesses;
  • a written account of how, when and where your accident happened;
  • an account of any expenses you incur because of your injury, such as lost wages;
  • a written account of how your injuries have affected your mental, physical and financial state;
  • details of any medical treatment you received after the accident.

Your solicitor will refer you to a medical expert who will assess how your injuries were sustained and the effect they have had on your life, strive to negotiate you a just out-of-court settlement, or represent you if your case has to go to court.

We can help secure any rehabilitation treatment you may need, obtain interim payments to cover your living expenses as you wait for your final compensation package to come through, and advise you on investing your compensation money.

How much compensation will I receive?

The amount of compensation you receive depends on the seriousness of your injury, your prognosis, and how your injury has affected your life, but could include damages for:

  • pain and suffering;
  • loss of earnings;
  • additional medical treatment or rehabilitation;
  • out-of-pocket expenses;
  • adaptations required to your home.

For more information on claiming compensation for a slip, trip or fall, or any other personal injury issue, contact Therese Classon, a Partner at WBW Solicitors in Newton Abbot, on 01626 202328 or email

WBW has offices in TorquayPaigntonNewton AbbotExeterBovey Tracey,  Exmouth,  Honiton,  Sidmouth,  Launceston,  AxminsterChard and Seaton.

This article is for general information only and does not constitute legal or professional advice. Please note that the law may have changed since this article was published.