You can sue a bowling alley for negligent security. If a bowling alley owner fails to provide adequate security and you get hurt as a result, the property owner can be liable for your injuries. Under Georgia law, landowners have to take reasonable steps to prevent foreseeable assaults or attacks and to keep people safe when on the premises.
What We Have to Prove to Hold the Bowling Alley Responsible
Negligent security has four elements, and we have to show all of them to hold the bowling alley liable for your injuries. The four required factors are:
The Bowling Alley Owed You a Legal Duty
The company must take reasonable measures to keep the bowling alley safe for people who are on the premises legally. If you are a customer or employee of the venue, you are on the premises legally.
Also, vendors and other lawful guests, like people who are delivering the mail, collecting the trash from the dumpsters, or reading the water meter are in the category of people who are on the property lawfully. Trespassers are not on the premises lawfully, so the owner has no duty toward them.
The bowling alley must provide reasonable security, so that lawfully present people can access the venue safely. This requirement usually encompasses areas like the building itself, the sidewalks, parking lot, and walkways between the bowling alley’s parking lot and the building.
The Bowling Alley Violated Its Legal Duty
If the bowling alley did not provide security that was adequate for the situation, it failed in meeting its legal obligation toward you. When someone breaches a legal duty, it is negligence.
For example, if the circumstances call for security cameras and bright lighting as reasonable measures, and the company did not use any such items, the bowling alley is negligent. Negligence by itself does not mean that the property owner owes anyone money damages.
The Bowling Alley’s Lack of Security Caused Your Injury
If you got hurt because of the bowling alley’s failure to provide adequate security, the company is liable for your losses. Let’s say that the area between the bowling alley and the parking lot was a dark walkway where there had been several assaults.
Reasonable measures to protect customers would be to install security cameras and bright lighting, but the venue refused to buy this equipment. If someone gets attacked in the walkway going from the car to the bowling alley, the company’s negligence caused the harm. Of course, the criminal’s actions directly caused the injuries, but you can sue the landowner for negligent security.
Adequate Security Would Have Prevented the Crime
It is impossible for landowners to prevent every crime that happens on their property, but they should take reasonable steps to protect their customers from foreseeable crimes. Because there had already been assaults in the dark walkway, it was foreseeable that another person would get attacked there.
Adequate security items like security cameras, bright lighting, and perhaps a security guard would have prevented the crime. For this reason, the bowling alley can be accountable for the harm it caused by its negligent security.
Security Is Not One-Size-Fits-All
The level of security the landowner will have to provide will depend on the unique circumstances of that piece of property. A bowling alley in a safe part of town with a very low crime rate and no history of violent crime on the premises will not have to take as many measures to protect its customers as an establishment in a high-crime region with a history of multiple attacks in the neighborhood.
The issue is foreseeability. Crime can happen anywhere, but it is more likely to occur in areas with a troubled recent past. In a safe part of town, the bowling alley might only need to provide adequate lighting, whereas, in a crime-plagued place, the owner might have to add security guards, warning signs, security cameras, and other measures to the bright lighting.
There is no yardstick by which you can measure the adequacy of security measures other than foreseeability. For example, you cannot say that every bowling alley that has security cameras outside the building has met its legal duty. A bowling alley can be guilty of negligent security even if it employs more security measures than a bowling alley in a different location if the security devices were not sufficient to prevent foreseeable crime.
Getting Legal Help for Negligent Security at a Bowling Alley
You can sue a bowling alley for negligent security and recover compensation for money damages. We understand that the legal standards can be overwhelming, but you do not have to figure them out on your own. We will be happy to answer your questions.
Call S. Burke Law today at 404-842-7838 for your free consultation.