With winter in full swing, Connecticut residents can expect to have to deal with snow and ice.
Most of the time, snow and ice is just an inconvenience for commuting. Especially for younger people, the winter weather can be a nice time to sled or enjoy some other winter recreation.
Unfortunately, because it is slick, snow and ice can at times be unsafe for people traveling to and from work, who are out shopping or who are even just walking in a neighborhood.
Business must take reasonable steps to clear snow and ice
In Connecticut, businesses and other commercial properties should clear parking lots and other common areas on their property after winter weather and do so promptly.
Depending on local laws, even owners of residential property may have an obligation to clear their sidewalks a reasonable time after winter precipitation. If they do not fulfill this responsibility, then they may face fines.
They may also be held financially accountable for a personal injury should a passerby slip and fall.
While this does not that a property owner has to make sure every patch of ice is immediately cleared, the owner has to take reasonable steps, like hiring a service or having employees shovel the walks, to make sure customers and others are safe.
If a business fails in this obligation, then a person can hold the business financially accountable if the person suffers an injury in a slip-and-fall accident because of snow or ice on the property.
Falls can cause permanent disabilities
It may be easy to think of a slip and fall on snow or ice as minor incident that, at worst, may cause some bruises and embarrassment. However, too often, the victim of a fall suffers more serious injuries, including major soft tissue injuries and broken bones. Traumatic injuries are also possible, and falls are the leading cause of spinal cord injuries among older adults.