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Co-op fined £400,000

In July 2015, Stanley May, aged 74, visited the Truro branch of the Co-op supermarket.

Mr May slipped on water leaking from a faulty sandwich chiller unit, causing him to fall, hitting his head on the floor, and unfortunately passed away two days later as a result of the head injury

Cornwall Council who brought the prosecution informed Truro Crown Court that the chiller had been faulty for forty four hours but customers had not taken any steps to keep customers away from the area affected by the leaking unit.

Engineers had tried to fix the chiller two days earlier, but had failed to do so. A yellow ‘wet floor’ sign had been positioned, but was inadequate as the leak extended beyond the area demarked by the sign.

The presiding Judge, Simon Carr said what happened was “so easily avoidable”, adding: “The company tried to address the problem but did so inadequately.”

The court also awarded £50,000 in costs to Cornwall Council, which brought the prosecution.

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