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woman shopping

“Online shopping has never been easier.  But the majority of American consumers want the tactile experiences offered by physical stores,” writes Sandy Skrovan in Retail Dive. The ability to see, touch and feel products as well as to take items home immediately rank highest among the reasons, according to Retail Dive’s Consumer Survey.

The credit union association HCCUA offers valuable tips for staying safe while shopping, explaining that shoppers live in a “state of unconscious functionality”, thinking only about what they want to buy. Meanwhile, thieves and muggers function in a “state of heightened awareness.”  Shoppers must stay aware of their surroundings, HCCUA cautions, keeping shopping bags, purses, and wallets close to the body.

Other HCCUA safety tips include:

  • Park close to the store and under lights at night.
  • Don’t talk to strangers.
  • Shop in a group or with another person.
  • Have your keys ready and lock the car doors immediately after you get in the car.

“The shopping center industry has always taken seriously its responsibility of providing a safe and comfortable environment in which to shop and work. Simply put, consumers will not shop and employees will not work in a shopping center where they do not feel safe,” the National Retail Federation cautions its business owner and retail employee members.

Shopping center and store owners understand the need to keep shoppers safe.  The challenge, explains one security company executive, is “to keep a center secure while removing the armed-camp veneer”. In a national survey, poor security topped the list of reasons not to shop at a particular mall, Jenny King writes in the National Real Estate Investor. Electronic surveillance, safety officers on foot and in vehicles, and code blue phone systems are all used to enhance safety at malls.

“The mall owner has a duty to keep visitors safe,” says LegalMatch.com. If an owner is negligent in that duty, allowing an unreasonably dangerous condition to exist at the mall, that owner may be held liable for injuries that result. On the other hand, recovering damages by victims of unanticipated criminal attacks occurring within or outside the mall can be complicated and difficult.  An experienced personal injury lawyer can help analyze the circumstances.

A negligent security claim can be filed against a business establishment or property owner who failed to provide adequate security measures to prevent criminal activity.

Shopping ‘til you drop is fine, but you must be kept safe!

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