$650k for accident at shopping centre

A CAPRICORN Coast woman who fell over in a pool of water is suing Stockland and its cleaning company for more than $650,000.

The plaintiff is in her 50s and the Morning Bulletin has chosen not to name her.

She has begun legal action against the shopping centre giant and Millennium Hi-Tech Group on the basis of negligence causing personal injury.

Documents were filed in the Supreme Court in Rockhampton on January 16 by George Cowan of Rees R and Sydney Jones.

The incident allegedly occurred on July 6, 2018 at 10.55am.

The plaintiff was walking in Stockland Rockhampton near the information kiosk adjacent to The Silver Shop when she fell over in water.

According to the court documents, a cup of ice from a mobility scooter had pooled near the kiosk.

It is claimed the plaintiff walked through the hazard, struck the water and fell, righted herself and continued to walk, immediately fell again in the water and suffered serious personal injury.

The court documents state her injuries included dislocation, very serious fracture and tendon injury to left ankle and aggravation of a pre-existing back injury.

It is claimed her injuries were treated surgically and she suffers pain daily, cannot run or walk to a substantial degree, is severely inhibited in mobility for travel and needs to raise and rest her lower leg continually.

The plaintiff alleges both defendants failed to warn her of the hazard, cordon off the hazard and ensure it was cleaned in a timely manner.

For losses and damages, she is claiming $656,350.59 which includes $450,000 for future economic loss.

A defence was filed by Carter Newell Lawyers on behalf of Millennium Hi-Tech on March 11 who claim “despite undertaking reasonable investigations”, they “remain uncertain to the truth” of the series of events on July 6.

Millennium claims it undertook an inspection of the floor near the kiosk at 10.39am and again at 10.59am.

It is stated cleaning and maintenance of the common areas is carried out every 20 minutes.

Millennium alleges they were not aware of the hazard, so they had no cause or opportunity to cordon off the alleged “hazard”.

It is claimed the time between the spill and the plaintiff’s fall was no more than six minutes.

Millennium denies it caused the plaintiff any loss and damages and states the moneys claimed are “excessive and disproportionate to the true nature of the plaintiff’s alleged injuries, loss and damage”.

Wotton and Kearney filed a defence on March 11 on behalf of Stockland Property and Trust Management which also claims the allegations are untrue.

Stockland states the “floor was as safe as the exercise of reasonable care the defendants could make it” and the “allegations are vague and inadequately particularised”.

Stockland admits the plaintiff fell but “does not know nor cannot admit” what the hazard was despite reasonable inquiries.

They further deny the plaintiff suffered injury to the tendons of her left ankle or any aggravation of a pre-existing back injury as this is “contrary to the medical evidence”.

It is claimed the plaintiff failed to report the hazard to take any preventive action.

Both Stockland and Millennium claim the injury and loss or damage was caused or contributed by the negligence of the plaintiff not exercising reasonable care to avoid risk of injury or paying sufficient attention to her surrounds and keeping a proper look out.

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