What is the connection between Grapes and Wine?

Answer: Their fluid content makes them both a slip hazard.


As claims for ‘slip and trip’ incidents become ever more frequent it is clear that a high level of importance should be placed on reducing the risk, wherever possible, by the training of staff, proper record keeping and the need for up-to-date CCTV.

The following case study shows how one client has put this in to action.

The Background

The family-owned and run nightclub in Hertfordshire had recently undergone a costly refurbishment. The family were always in attendance whenever it was open.

Everything they did was carefully managed and there were always plenty of staff running the bar, cleaning and looking after security.  They had systems and protocols in place to cope with breakages, unruly customers, accidents etc.  BUT nothing was written down.

The Problem

The inevitable happened.  A letter arrived from a solicitor on behalf of someone claiming they had fallen over in the club.  The club had no evidence to counteract this and were unable to prove they weren’t negligent.

Although they made some changes, such as installing lights on the stairs and putting non-slip carpet around the bar area, the claims continued to come in, often several months after the event by which time there was no CCTV available.

Six claims later it wasn’t looking good.  Insurers had paid out on two of these, both quite high amounts.

The Solution

Country Life met with the client to discuss what needed to be done. With no charge to the client they devised spreadsheets for all areas which included:

  • Written risk assessments for each floor of the club.
  • Induction and training schedules for all staff
  • Written Health and Safety policy.
  • Protocols to be followed in the event of certain events such as glass breakage or accidents to customers.
  • The keeping on of CCTV when an incident occurs.

Following the adoption of these by the club, no further claims have been paid by their insurer. They have been able to deny liability on all further claims because the client can now provide documented evidence to show they do all they can to reduce risk .

As long as they can show they have taken all reasonable precautions it should prevent claims of this nature being paid.  You won’t prevent them happening, partly because by the very nature of the premises – a nightclub – people are often drunk when they arrive and almost certainly when they leave!