Woman offered £40 voucher by Co-op after car park fall

PUBLISHED: 14:03 17 November 2020

Lynette Bird badly bruised her leg (L) and damaged a tendon in her hand (R) after falling over the uneven surface of the Co-op in Soham. Pictures: Supplied by Lynette Bird

Lynette Bird badly bruised her leg (L) and damaged a tendon in her hand (R) after falling over the uneven surface of the Co-op in Soham. Pictures: Supplied by Lynette Bird

Archant

A supermarket chain has apologised to a disabled woman after she fell over the uneven car park surface of its Soham store.

Lynette Bird badly bruised her leg and damaged a tendon when she fell in the Co-op car park in Soham. Pictures: Google Street View / Supplied by Lynette BirdLynette Bird badly bruised her leg and damaged a tendon when she fell in the Co-op car park in Soham. Pictures: Google Street View / Supplied by Lynette Bird

Lynette Bird didn’t notice the cracked tarmac in the Co-op’s car park as it was covered in leaves and debris, and she fell while walking from the disabled bay to the shop.

Her leg was badly bruised and she damaged her hand which was operated on the week before.

She didn’t go to hospital immediately afterwards but an x-ray during a follow up appointment at Addenbrooke’s revealed she had damaged a tendon in her hand.

Lynette, 59, from Burwell, said: “The injuries were very painful and I couldn’t walk afterwards.

Lynette Bird badly bruised her leg and damaged a tendon when she fell in the Co-op car park in Soham. She didn't notice the uneven and cracked surface of the car park. Pictures: Supplied by Lynette BirdLynette Bird badly bruised her leg and damaged a tendon when she fell in the Co-op car park in Soham. She didn't notice the uneven and cracked surface of the car park. Pictures: Supplied by Lynette Bird

“Thankfully, I didn’t break anything but I still couldn’t leave the house for a week.

“If that had happened to a frail or elderly person, it could’ve killed them. That surface is really dangerous.”

When Lynette fell, she said the duty manager came over to see how she was doing.

Another store manager called her later to also apologise, and offered the £40 Co-op shopping voucher.

Lynette Bird badly bruised her leg and damaged a tendon when she fell in the Co-op car park in Soham. She didn't notice the uneven and cracked surface of the car park. Pictures: Supplied by Lynette BirdLynette Bird badly bruised her leg and damaged a tendon when she fell in the Co-op car park in Soham. She didn't notice the uneven and cracked surface of the car park. Pictures: Supplied by Lynette Bird

She said: “The crack I fell over is pretty close to the disabled parking bay and it could very easily happen to someone else.

“Apparently, they’ve had trouble with people tripping over in this car park before.

“So it really needs to get sorted out because that surface only going to get worse if it’s left.”

As well as urging the supermarket chain to repair the surface, she would also like her friend compensated for losing a week’s work to care for her after the fall.

Co-op in High Street, Soham. Pictures: Google Street ViewCo-op in High Street, Soham. Pictures: Google Street View

But she said her emails to the Co-op’s claims department were only answered when this newspaper contacted them.

“I felt I needed to take this further with Co-op because my friend is out of pocket for looking after me,” Lynette added.

A spokesperson for Co-op apologised to Lynette and explained the incident, which happened on October 19, is being investigated immediately.

He added the £40 voucher was an initial “gesture of goodwill”.

Lynette said: “I’m slowly getting better.

“I still can’t lift anything that’s quite heavy like a kettle with my hand, but it will get there.”

She added: “I’m on a mission now to get other uneven paths in the area fixed. I don’t want this happening to other people.”


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