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Dangerous buys: personal injuries on Black Friday

While many of us are excited for Thanksgiving festivities and turkey, a large portion of New Jersey families are more excited for the great deals to be had on Black Friday. The national kick-off of the holiday shopping season has turned into a circus-like event at many stores but the shopping festivities have a darker side. Every year many people suffer serious personal injuries because some stores foster mob-like situations with early morning door-busting deals.

“Crowd-related injuries during special retail sales and promotional events have increased during recent years,” said Dr. David Michaels, an administrator for the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration. “Many of these incidents can be prevented by adopting a crowd management plan.”

One store that definitely did not have an adequate crowd management plan is the Long Island Wal-Mart that was the site of a chaotic stampede in 2008. A 34-year-old Wal-Mart employee was actually trampled to death during that store’s Black Friday event. A pregnant woman was also trampled during that event and lost her child.

More personal injuries and dangerous Black Friday incidents happened last year. There were shooting threats made by an inpatient shopper at a Wisconsin Toys “R” Us store and a Target shopper was severely trampled at a Buffalo, N.Y. store.

To avoid personal injuries during this year’s Black Friday festivities make sure to go to stores in groups and avoid rushing into unruly mobs of shoppers.

Source: The Christian Post, “Black Friday 2011: Stampedes and Shootings Mark ‘Deadly’ Day of Discounts,” Ray Downs, Nov. 2, 2011

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