New York City’s recent snowfalls haven’t only created havoc for drivers – the snow has sent hundreds to the hospital with slip-and-fall injuries.
Many pedestrians and bicyclists have had to learn the hard way that snow, ice and slush can make for very dangerous sidewalks. Elderly pedestrians, those with disabilities and children are especially susceptible to winter time slip-and-fall accidents.
Common injuries resulting from a snow or ice slip-and-fall include arm and hand injuries, shoulder injuries and ankle injuries. In some of the more serious incidents, doctors have seen cases of victims hitting the pavement so hard that they sustain serious, and even fatal, brain injuries.
While common sense can often help to avoid slip-and-fall injuries, there are some additional tips to avoid a serious slip-and-fall:
Homeowners and landlords have a responsibility to clear the sidewalks of snow and ice accumulation. When sidewalks and walkways are not cleared, an injured victim may have the right to file a premises liability lawsuit. To win a premises liability suit, a New York victim will have to show that a dangerous condition existed and that the condition was the direct cause of the victim’s slip-and fall injuries.
While the standard to win a premises liability suit may seem easy, in many cases it is actually a difficult burden for the plaintiff to establish. Documenting the sidewalk conditions, taking witness’ names and numbers and photographing the scene can all help bolster a premises liability suit.
Source: CBS New York (online), “Slush Sending Elderly Patients to Emergency Room,” 31 Dec 2010