Coles Supermarkets ordered to give $1 million to employee who fell off step stool while stocking shelves

Supermarket (illustration)
Supermarket (illustration)
By: Tanya Clark

A woman suffered serious injuries after falling from a step stool while stacking shelves at a Coles Supermarket, according to court documents in Australia.

34-year-old Nicole Marie Harris of Canberra, filed a lawsuit against the Coles Supermarket chain, claiming that the store was negligent by not teaching her how to use the step stool.

Harris told Justice Linda Ashford, that while stocking shelves, she slipped and fell off the step stool. As a result, she injured her hip, knee, ankle and shoulder.

Harried underwent medical treatment, and a hip replacement surgery. Since the incident, Harris uses a walking stick because she has a fear of falling.

She can no longer drive a car, sit or stand for long periods of time.

Coles Supermarkets denied the allegations, saying that Harris signed documents, which described how to use the step stool in a safe manner.

The store also claimed that Harris was exaggerating her injuries.

Ashford found that the company was liable for the fall.

She has ordered Coles Supermarket to give Harris $1.08 million for damages, medical expenses, and loss of income.