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To write a letter of complaint

(47 Posts)
Shadowboy Thu 27-Apr-17 12:15:25

Yesterday I took both children to local garden centre and needed to use the baby change facilities. On leaving my daughter got her finger stuck in the door. It's now been x rayed and the bone is so damaged it will require surgery. She's only 2.5 years old.

To leave the baby change I had to push the baby's pushchair out whilst holding the door open as it's a heavy fire door with a strong heavy closing mechanism. Due to the angle of the corridor I needed to tightly turn the pushchair round and although my daughter was right next to me she got her finger caught in the door hinge but the door shut so heavily and abruptly i didn't have time to pull her away. I've never heard her scream like that so hard.

Would it be unreasonable to write a letter to ask them to loosen the return mechanism on the door so it doesn't snap back/slowly closes or to put a door hinge protective cover on bearing in mind it's an area that's commonly used by small children. Or should I just leave it? It's probably my fault for not watching where she had her hand but I was watching where I turned the pushchair - I feel so guilty for her. It's probably just my emotions and my own guilt that make me want to complain.

mccuntypants Thu 27-Apr-17 12:17:46

Please don't blame yourself, accidents happen now matter how closely we are watching. It must have been an awful shock for you both though. I would write, explain what happened and at the very least request finger guards put in place. Go easy on yourself x

arbrighton Thu 27-Apr-17 12:18:17

I'd have mentioned it at the time, they probably need to do some paperwork. But probably as well to point it out- perhaps go back and speak in person rather than a letter which might seem a bit PA

My dad actually shut the door on my sister's hand when she was about 2....

Shadowboy Thu 27-Apr-17 12:20:04

She was so upset I didn't think to mention it. Once I'd managed to calm her down we took her to a&me as the swelling was rapid and substantial. We are waiting for swelling to subside but one of the little bones is crushed.

Whynotnowbaby Thu 27-Apr-17 12:26:07

Oh poor thing. Yes definitely write, it is completely unacceptable for them to have a door that can injure someone like that and I think it is the case that if something like that is drawn to their attention they are obliged to act on it (or be in big trouble and potentially uninsured if someone else does the same and sues them).

FanaticalFox Thu 27-Apr-17 12:31:47

Ah not anyone's fault particularly definitely not your fault. I would definitely let them know what happened and your suggestion on how to resolve it, i am sure the owners would want to know. However i wouldnt word it is a complaint as it does just seem to be an accident.

DartmoorDoughnut Thu 27-Apr-17 12:33:34

Poor wee sausage sad I'd def write a email/letter to tell them

user1469914265 Thu 27-Apr-17 13:31:30

It's your fault. And the fact that you didn't mention it at the time is going to cause all manner of shit for the management if you now complain as they won't have any of the required paperwork.

I wouldn't write to the holding company, if you're desperate to make a fuss I'd phone the manager of the centre first so they have a chance to act before being taken by surprise by a blocking they have no idea is on it's way.

Also, if it's a fire door there is probably very little they will be able to change.

BorpBorpBorp Thu 27-Apr-17 13:34:24

You could suggest they put an automatic (push-button) opener/closer on the door, that would solve the problem of it being heavy to push, make it close more slowly, and make the baby change facilities more accessible.

Littleredhouse Thu 27-Apr-17 13:40:46

Bit harsh user. I can totally see why the OP didn't mention it at the time as she would have been in a state trying to deal with her daughter. Poor little thing.

I don't think it's your fault OP and would tell them what happened but not frame it as a complaint - hopefully they'll come up with a safer solution.

MatildaTheCat Thu 27-Apr-17 13:51:08

This sounds like a serious health and safety issue TBH. I think you should email the local H&S service and ask them to assess. Don't write that it may be your own fault, simply state the facts. A facility for young children should not have such a risk literally at their fingertips.

Hope your dd recovers well.

Judashascomeintosomemoney Thu 27-Apr-17 13:54:40

There might be reasons why a fire door can't have a soft close but there's no reason for there not to be a hinge cover surely. Definitely follow this up. Hope she's better soon poor thing.

Jenny70 Thu 27-Apr-17 13:54:53

I would definitely let them know, but in a "this happened and this is one possibly way to make these facilities safer so it didn't happen to someone else, possibly with similar or worse outcome", rather than a complaint.

Email if you have it might be best, written record of issue, rather than call where you might get someone who says the right things but has no authority (or will) to effect any change. Letter seems bit formal.

harderandharder2breathe Thu 27-Apr-17 13:58:39

Your poor DD and poor you! flowers it was a nasty accident, certainly not your fault!

I agree with PP that a button to open the door would reduce risk of injury and be easier for users trying to manage buggies so would be good to suggest.

It's natural that your first thought was your small child and their injury and distress rather than complaining or mentioning it to management so don't beat yourself up for not doing it at the time

DontBeASalmon Thu 27-Apr-17 14:07:07

User who can't even be bothered to chose a name before trolling, have a biscuit

Poor little thing, these accidents are awful.

You should absolutely write a letter, or an email to start, at the very least they need to be aware of the risk of injuries with that door. Any normal human being will feel really sorry for your daughter and will try to ensure if won't happen again if it's possible.

I can't believe some people think that the first thing the mother of an injured child would do is fill paperwork about the incident, that's ridiculous. The first priority is your child

user1469914265 Thu 27-Apr-17 14:29:29

Why pick a name? The people who run the site clearly don't have a problem with people not picking names or else they'd make it mandatory when signing up.

Also I don't think I'm trolling. At least I'm saying something other than 'oh poor lickle babby hurt her fingy winy... not ur fault hun xxx' When it clearly is her fault as she wasn't watching her two year old who was fucking about with her fingers shoved in a door jamb.

DontBeASalmon Thu 27-Apr-17 14:43:22

you are a treat, aren't you!

You are now blaming the 2 year old too? Does it make you feel better to insult and blame a mother who is already really upset and hasn't done anything wrong?

Some people must have such a shit life to be that vicious and angry, but I doubt upsetting random strangers will make you feel any better.

why am I discussing with a troll, I have no idea

user1469914265 Thu 27-Apr-17 14:47:36

Nope. Stating a fact.

I have sympathy. I lost the tips of my fingers in a car door when I was younger. Because I was ducking about with my hand in the way and my mum wasn't watching. Who do I complain to? Mercedes?

CatsRidingRollercoasters Thu 27-Apr-17 15:16:08

user ODFOD

OP - sorry this has happened. I don't think anyone is particularly to blame - accidents happen. I definitely think it's worth letting them know though so that they can put things in place to hopefully prevent a repetition.

In the school where I teach most of the internal doors are fire doors. They all have hinge covers on them.

As a pp suggested, a button to open the door electronically would be even better and might make it much easier to get a buggy through.

I have 2 toddlers and if one of them was injured the last thing on my mind would be notifying the relevant people and paperwork.

Hope she's better soon and ignore the troll.

Shadowboy Thu 27-Apr-17 16:03:47

Thanks folks. I do feel at fault as I could have looked at where she had her hand in all honesty but I feel awful for her as she now has to undergo surgery with a small pin and plate so the finger doesn't 'claw' apparently.

I'm not sure if it would be possible to have it so it doesn't snap back as the mechanism almost jolts back when the door closes. Hence why it was a crush injury as the door snapped back so fast. I'd love it if they could put the plastic hinge protectors on the door as it would make it much safer for anyone else.

I probably shouldn't have worded as a complaint but a suggestion? Do I write to the centre itself or the head office?

The centre know it happened as a member of staff brought bottle of water for me as I was really stressed out and I think I'd gone pale looking at the state of her finger.

All being well as long as selling reduces she will have surgery tomorrow or sat.

Doyouthinktheysaurus Thu 27-Apr-17 16:09:47

There should be a hinge cover! I would tell them, advise them of the seriousness of your dd's injury and they should make efforts to prevent it happening again. Hinge covers should do that.

Your poor dd, and you op, I know that sickening panic and it's awfulthanks

Ds2 closed the door on ds1's finger when they were little and it was awful. We were on the end of Brighton pier, it was the door to the toilets and I had to rush him to hospital with blood pouring from his finger. No fucker on the pier helped me! Ds1 was fine. Few hours in A&E and then we had chips on the beach before heading homegrin

Wolfiefan Thu 27-Apr-17 16:15:12

I'm so sorry this happened OP. My DD managed to shut her fingers in the hinge of a fire door. It was horrid.
I don't think you should complain as such but I do think they should be made aware that this has happened and then they can see if they can make any adjustments to stop it ever happening again.

Pentapus Thu 27-Apr-17 16:58:14

OP, I am surprised at many responses here. The store have a duty of care to their customers, even more so to children, who can be unpredictable. Considering the baby change facility was the primary area where one would expect to find children, that part of the environment should be safe for children. It obviously was not.

I actually think your daughter has a claim for compensation. I would suggest you ask for this to be moved to Legal to see what guidance you get.

Your poor daughter, I hope her op goes smoothly.

Oh, and user is clearly both ignorant and unpleasant.

Pentapus Thu 27-Apr-17 17:02:53

Occupiers' Liability Act 1957 is the relevant legislation.

Pentapus Thu 27-Apr-17 17:03:49

Under the Act, occupiers must be prepared for children to be less careful than adults.

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