Friday, January 04, 2008

Why do Tesco's pay little heed to health and safety?!?!

My day didn't start that well~ have I got you curious!? On new year's day my mother was knocked over outside our local Tesco Metro which is a few hundred yards up the road from where we live. I can feel the gasps.....this was not by a car but by a stack of baskets that toppled onto her and knocked her off her feet. The first I knew about it was when I heard voices at the front door and one of the checkout ladies had walked home with her.
Although there appeared to be no injuries, my mother was rather shaken and needed to rest. Over the past couple of days she has found that her shoulders and neck are very painful and she can hardly move to turn over in bed. I went back to Tesco the following day to asked to see what had been recorded in their accident book. They couldn't produce anything!!-correct me if I'm wrong, but I thought keeping accident/incident records was a H&S requirement or is it only for employees and not customers!

The acting duty manager told me he had recorded the incident on a piece of paper but he couldn't find it~ his verbal version was very different to my mother's account! He was not even aware that it was the poorly stacked baskets that had knocked her over. However he did agree that this was a H&S issue and that he had often thought there were too many baskets- so why not do something about it!!
My brother went into the store yesterday to follow up on it and still no record could be produced. I don't believe that anyone had even asked my mother for her name and address.
Today I took my mother to the doctors for a check up just to be on the safe side and there appears to be no serious damage but she is on some strong painkillers for sleeping.

My mother doesn't want to make a fuss and my brother wants to sue the pants off them (well not quite~ but he feels they could have sent her some flowers or given her a gift voucher. I think they should have enquired after her well-being, and I am inclined to agree about the flowers). My brother is very keen that she gets some form of compensation for her discomfort, my mother doesn't want to take it any further (she feels it would make it difficult to shop there and I see that) and I'm piggy in the middle~ so what would you do if you were in my shoes??????



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January 4th 2006: Now here's a challenge

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23 Comments:

At 4/1/08 17:04, Blogger Beccy said...

When I told Joules about granny I could see the pound signs popping in his head. I told him in no uncertain terms that we British do not sue, sue, sue but are a more reserved race...well most of us are.

However I do think that Tesco should have recorded the incident and that an inquiry and flowers would have been an appropiate follow up. Maybe a letter to their head office or a quiet word with the manager along the lines of 'my mother doesn't want to sue but we are a little worried about your lack of concern and failure to follow health and safety rules aand regulations...'

 
At 4/1/08 17:15, OpenID grannymar said...

The HQ need to be made aware of what happened. Phone HQ and ask for the top Mans name. Say you are writhing a letter and want to check his correct title. Do not at this stage say why.

Write and tell the story of what happened to your frail mother, make no ref to compensation. Put the ball in their court. Say that if your mother had been badly injured the H&S Book would be called into play and the company would then be in big trouble! See what that brings.

 
At 4/1/08 17:25, Blogger Asha said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

 
At 4/1/08 17:27, Blogger Asha said...

In US, your mum already would have had a attorney and law suits would have been flying by this time!
I do understand accidents happen but they still should apologize,send flowers and send granny few coupons for her next purchases instead of trying to hide the videos.I am sure they have it.
Your brother should hound them with visits and letters until it's done. That's my two cents.
Hope your mum feels better, need to rest a lot for few days.Take care.

 
At 4/1/08 17:29, Blogger Sam said...

Grannymar's suggestion is a good one. I agree about us Brits not being a nation of suers (my dear uncle excepted, perhaps.) Personally I do not care for the sue mentality. Really - everyone makes mistakes - and I mean EVERYONE. Those who are so quick to sue all the time - I hope you are never on the other side of the equation when you make a mistake some time in the future. Now, having said that - Tesco do need to take some responsibility here. An apology is needed at the very least - and they need to made aware of their short comings so this doesn't happen again. Next time someone could be seriously injured. When we were in Fiji we got news of the tiger attack and a young man being killed at the zoo on Christmas day. Fred and I were discussing it for a while and gave the news to some fellow san fracniscan's vacationing on the same island. Immediately, the first thing out of his mouth, the first response was "Woah someone is going to get sued". This hadn't even crossed mine and Fred's mind, not for a second. I guess that's the difference between the Irish/Americans and the French/English.

 
At 4/1/08 17:56, Blogger Lil Mouse said...

I'd have my back up for sure. dont think i'd sue (please, for the love of all things you hold holy, do NOT lump all Americans together by what you see on tv, most of it is preposterous!) but i would be complaining to the manager if they didnt offer their sympathies in person, at the VERY least. in the US, well let me give you an example, when i worked in the autumn, i got a call that my boss' wife had slipped in a dept store. they got his number and called for him to come get her and take her to the doctor. it wasn't serious enough for an ambulance.. but i imagine here in the states, if anything happened, due to the notion that someone might sue, they will definitely call an ambulance unless you're extremely vehement about it. they'd apologize profusely, i dont know about gifts, that would presume guilt and possibly lead to someone being all about a lawsuit.. its the threat, not necessarily that it happens all the time, that we witness the most.. a few bad apples spoil the world's view of us.. sad to say.. glad your mom is doing okay...

 
At 4/1/08 17:58, Blogger Lil Mouse said...

and asha, speak for yourself. not everyone in the US sues, its only those desperate and greedy.

 
At 4/1/08 17:59, Blogger Tiger Lamb Girl said...

I'm American and I am not litigious. I don't agree people should jump to sue.

But I can understand in a situation like this why one could become so incensed by the lack of common human decency that they might want to sue a company like Tesco to make them think twice in future.

Having said that, I don't think it would have the desired effect anyway, because no doubt, the on-duty manager wouldn't be brought to task - or made accountable in any way. No one would.

People don't want to take responsibility for anything these days. I find that a lot here in UK.

Having said that, I find a lot of good people here too. It's just too bad that not many good hearted people with common sense work in management positions. I'm not saying there aren't *any*, but there just aren't enough.

I totally agree with grannymar. I definitely think Tesco needs to step up and offer a sincere apology. Flowers would be a nice gesture too. But it wouldn't have the same effect if they have to be told to be decent!

I really hope you write a letter like grannymar suggested - and play it just the way she said.

Tesco (and other companies...and people too!) need to wake up and remember customers are people.


Hope she's feeling better soon! xo

 
At 4/1/08 18:09, Blogger john.g. said...

Sue the pants off them!

 
At 4/1/08 18:51, Anonymous nikki said...

At least an apology would have been nice! I agree with Grannymar.

 
At 4/1/08 20:12, Blogger Alix said...

I think a follow up to see how she was and an apology are definitely in order from Tesco. I'm really surprised they behaved so poorly. I'd write to head office and see what happens.
Hope that your Mum is feeling better and doesn't need the pain killers for to long.

 
At 4/1/08 21:03, Blogger frannie said...

I agree with Beccy... I don't think that suing is the absolute way to go, but I do think you should express your concern over the fact that they don't give $.02 about your mum's wellbeing. I would go back and explain that she had the doctor's visit and such and is in considerable pain and suggest that they send some candies and flowers or something to her. Tell them that you family is quite upset with their effort and that you feel this would smooth things over.

 
At 4/1/08 21:03, Blogger laurie said...

oh my gosh your poor mother!

i'd make a LOT of noise if i were you. like grannymar suggests, go right to the top. demand an explanation, an apology, payment of her medical bills, some sort of satisfaction.

that's disgraceful. but people at the lower levels have no power. there's nothing any of them are empowered to do. you need to go up the chain.

 
At 4/1/08 21:28, Blogger Julie said...

The important thing is your mom is ok. I do think the store should have the accident on record. I would write a letter to the store manager and copy someone at their HQ.

 
At 4/1/08 21:56, Blogger ChrisB said...

Thank you for all the advice guys. I would hate something similar happening to some other elderly person so I think they will get a polite letter regarding their health and safety and treatment of customers (the staff were actually very kind on the day).

 
At 5/1/08 01:13, Blogger Aoj & The Lurchers said...

I agree that HQ need to be told - with a strongly worded letter - and that at the very least an apology should be forthcoming.

Hope your mum feels better soon.

 
At 5/1/08 03:00, Blogger Kila said...

I would talk to management about it until they at least apologize. It would be nice if they did something for her, like gift cards and flowers, etc.

I hope she feels better soon.

 
At 5/1/08 06:18, Blogger my4kids said...

I would be really upset by that, especially the note having any record of it! That is pretty much negligence when including the baskets to begin with. I would expect something at least an apology and some kind of "gift" or something from the store if not the company itself.
But then I'm American and we are known for being sue happy. That said I wouldn't sue but push the issue that they need to fix the situation with the baskets and put in place something for recording sake.

 
At 5/1/08 08:23, Blogger Pamela said...

I would ask them for assurances (in writing with their apology) that changes were being made to avoid future mishaps.

Nice of her not to want to make a big fuss about it. But she is worth a big fuss (:

 
At 5/1/08 10:38, Blogger Deborah said...

Oh Chris- your poor Mom. What an awful scare for her. I am appalled, but sadly, not surprised by Tesco's attitude to this. Agree with Grannymar. Call HQ - unfortunately you might be routed through India, as I have found dealing with Tesco before, but it's worth checking out. I have seen their CEO speak and he seems like a genuine and caring person. Write to him.

Best of luck and hope Granny is recovering!

 
At 5/1/08 20:14, Blogger Anvilcloud said...

I'd tread carefully. Tesco is being bad here, but it was your mother's fall, and you know what she wants.

 
At 5/1/08 21:32, OpenID itsamumslife said...

Hope your Mum's feeling a bit less sore today.
I also agree with Grannymar, a letter to the Tesco HQ sounds like a good idea.
Hannah

 
At 6/1/08 04:20, Blogger lisa's chaos said...

It doesn't sound like Tesco is doing its job. I hope your mom feels better soon Chris!

 

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