A Madison County woman claims she incurred medical bills after she slipped and fell over an empty flat that was placed in the middle of an aisle in a Bethalto store.

Carleen Balzraine filed a lawsuit April 18 in Madison County Circuit Court against Schnuck Markets and Larry Hagen.

In her complaint, Balzraine claims she was shopping in the Bethalto Schnuck Markets on Aug. 31, 2011, when she slipped and fell on an empty flat.

In addition to her medical bills, Balzraine experienced pain and suffering because of her fall, according to the complaint.

Balzraine blames Schnuck Markets and its supervisor, Larry Hagen, for causing her injuries, saying they negligently failed to warn of the empty flat lying in the aisle, failed to barricade the flat from customers, failed to provide a proper place for Balzraine to walk while she was looking for items and failed to inspect the premises to make sure the walkways were safe.

“The low-lying flat for moving merchandise in the aisle way of the retail store was a latent defect in that it was not readily visible to the eye of the customer as she walked through the aisle way crowded with shoppers and merchandise and was therefore a hazard for persons who were shopping in within the store,” the suit states.

In her two-count complaint, Balzraine seeks a judgment of more than $100,000, plus costs.

Jane Unsell of Unsell, Schattnik and Phillips in Wood River will be representing her.

Madison County Circuit Court case number: 13-L-603.

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