“A lot of people like snow. I find it to be an unnecessary freezing of water.” – Carl Reiner
Mr. Reiner is right, cold weather and snow is something to look forward to for millions of people who love to ski, skate, or speed down their favorite hill on a sled. For others, it’s a dreaded curse that means shoveling, sliding all over the road in their car, or slipping on a sidewalk and falling. Like anything in life, there’s a good side and a bad side.
Whether you love it or hate it, snow is something you’ll have to contend with if you live in the north. And if you’re a homeowner or a business owner, you have to do more than contend, you have to plan, prepare, and execute a plan for removing snow and ice in areas where someone may slip, fall, and be injured.
Most people are comfortable shoveling some snow off the sidewalks and throwing around a little salt around to safeguard their premises from mishaps. Maybe they hire a kid down the street to shovel and salt but if he or she forgets, oh well. Hopefully no one will slip. That’s not a very wise course of action.
According to the CDC, the number one cause of unintentional injuries in 2015 was “unintentional fall” and it’s estimated that nearly 50% of those were caused by snow or ice. The monetary damages from hospital bills, rehabilitation, and long-term care, pain, and suffering.
Most communities have standards set by municipalities for the proper care of premises, especially commercial properties. There are also standards for “reasonable due care and caution” in courts across the country and they are very important in the course of a civil action for damages. There are statutes in every state pertaining to “premises liability” and if you’re not familiar with them then you we hope you never learn them as the defendant in a lawsuit.
“An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure” is an axiom attributed not to Carl Reiner but to Benjamin Franklin, and it’s a good one everyone should keep in mind. We recommend that if you own a business you consult with someone who has the knowledge and expertise to advise you on the best way to prepare and avoid accidents on your premises.
Sidewalk Snow Expert Witness
Mr. Jeremy Swenson has been advising businesses on proper snow and ice safety plans and how to execute them for over 10 years. He is the owner of one of the largest snow removal companies in the mid-west and he has acted as an expert witness in many legal actions involving slip and fall accidents. Reaching out to Mr. Swenson is easy, just dial (816) 564-9131 and Mr. Swenson will arrange a free and confidential consultation.