For many Americans, getting up early on Black Friday and standing in line for unrivaled shopping deals has become as much of a tradition as turkey and stuffing on Thanksgiving. Originally used to describe the heavy pedestrian and vehicle traffic which would occur on the day after Thanksgiving, the term “Black Friday” evolved into meaning the annual point of time at which retailers stopped operating at a financial loss. Now regarded as the beginning of the Christmas season, major retailers have begun opening their doors astonishingly early and offering unbelievable bargains. Unfortunately, this unofficial holiday has now also become synonymous with violence.
In recent years, Black Friday has made the news as being a day on which shoppers behave badly, both causing and receiving serious injuries. One of the worst instances happened in a New York Wal-Mart store in 2008 when a crowd of 2,000 people stampeded into the store, killing an employee and injuring four others. In 2011, a shopper who collapsed at a West Virginia Target was ignored by other shoppers and later died in a hospital. The website blackfridaydeathcount.com reports that 7 people have died and 90 people have been injured since 2006. Although there have been no Black Friday-related deaths in Georgia so far, in 2012 a deal on a cell phone with a prepaid, unlimited usage plan led to frenzied excitement captured on video among customers in a Moultrie Wal-Mart. The video shows a large crowd of people pushing, yelling, and grabbing boxes off a shelf at the store.
It can be difficult to understand why people act this way. It’s possible that the crowds create a sense of competition among some people to get a good deal. The crowds may cause other shoppers to embrace the herd mentality and do what everyone else does. Still others may view the day as a physical and mental challenge to vanquish their peers. Whatever the reasons, there’s no doubt it’s safer to stay home and shop online on Cyber Monday.
If you have been injured in a Black Friday fracas, give the personal injury attorneys of the Mann Law Firm a call at 478-742-3381 or fill out our online form to schedule a free and confidential initial consultation about your case. Victims have recovered compensation based on a wide variety of courses of action including wrongful death, false arrest, premises liability, and assault. Let us review your case today.