In the Summer months hotels, guest houses and B&B’s in the UK are full of both domestic and foreign holidaymakers exploring British towns and countryside. For such establishments these months are the most busy and most profitable of the year, and the seasonal workforce increases accordingly.
In an industry focussed on providing a range of services to customers, inevitably accidents and injuries will occur. In larger hotels, health and safety procedures are likely to be more strictly enforced than in a small countryside B&Bs. However, the range of services they offer guests is generally wider, including leisure facilities and greater choices for eating and drinking. Higher visitor numbers, more services on offer and a temporary workforce increases the risk of accidents to both guests and employees.
In a smaller guest house or B&B on the other hand, safety standards will depend entirely on the proprietors. Such establishments are likely to be less well maintained than their larger rivals and will not necessarily have been designed with the safety of guests foremost in mind. All hotels, guest houses and B&Bs of whatever size must hold public liability insurance to compensate those injured due to the establishment’s negligence. They must also hold employer’s liability insurance to deal with claims of behalf of injured members of staff. British holidaymakers may also claim for injuries sustained in hotels abroad if the stay was part of a package deal or if the hotel is British-owned.
The Health & Safety Executive reports that slips and trips and manual handling accidents are the major causes of injuries to hotel employees, representing roughly 65% of the total. Slips, trips and falls are also the number one cause of injuries to hotel guests. Such accidents may take place in a hotel bathroom if a floor is slippery and/or if handrails are not installed. Hotel lobbies and passages may be left wet and hazardous if they have been recently cleaned and not cordoned off by staff. Stairs and balconies may also lack banisters or safety railing, causing visitors to fall down or off them.
Stairways may be poorly lit, or carpets may be damaged or frayed, resulting in trips and falls. Such accidents can be particularly serious if a person falls onto a hard surface such as a table edge, or down a flight of stairs. Hotel car parks and grounds may also contain hazards such as uneven surfaces, pot holes and missing drain covers.
The list of other possible accidents that may occur in a hotel, guest house or B&B is almost endless. Visitors may be electrocuted by appliances, poisoned by food served from the kitchen, or scaled by hot food or beverages spilled onto them by staff or fellow guests. Larger establishments with swimming pools and sports facilities will need to take precautions against specific hazards which may cause accidents.
Accidents and injuries at hotels, guest houses and B&Bs are common in the UK. Our solicitors have extensive experience with hotel accident compensation claims on behalf of both customers and employees. We operate on a no win no fee basis meaning if you win your case you keep all of the damages awarded, and if you lose you will not pay a penny.