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Slipping and Falling on Ice Can Be Frightening
New Jersey weather can be a bit confusing as temperatures continue to rise and fall. Put that together with any amount of precipitation, and you have the potential for disaster. From one week to the next, there’s no telling if you’ll find it raining or snowing. However, one thing is certain. The prospect of slipping and falling on ice can be frightful.
Each and every year, winter weather presents its share of problems. There is no clear documentation regarding the number of people injured in fall-down accidents. However, emergency rooms report they see more slip and fall victims once snow and ice are on the ground.
Just about everyone knows the inherent dangers of slippery surfaces. That said, conditions may include black ice. In such cases, the walkway may appear clear – but actually is more of an icy glaze. Real problems occur when a property owner neglects to treat the area where people walk.
It’s not a pretty picture – and may easily happen to you. As you walk out of your apartment building to your car, you may not even realize the existence of black ice. Before you know it, your feet give way beneath you, and you’re thrown forward.
Dazed and confused only slightly address how you might feel after such an unexpected accident. Unfortunately, the impact of your fall – or your attempts to break it – may cause you to fracture bones or hurt your back. In fact, some people who slip and fall on ice hit their heads and suffer brain injuries.
No doubt your first concern will be paying your medical bills. However, there’s a chance you’ll have to take time off from work. Additionally, your injuries may warrant a negligence claim. Could someone be liable?
Premises Liability: Slip and Fall Accidents
When you slip and fall because of snow or ice, there are several considerations. First, both present hazardous conditions and property owners may have particular duties when it comes to protecting pedestrians.
When you retain an experienced personal injury attorney, your claim becomes the subject of investigation. First, it will be critical to determine how long the dangerous condition existed. For example, records show there was not much snow in Union County so far this year. However, that’s not to say you didn’t fall because rain froze on the walking surface.
In the meantime, you should know how time plays into your liability claim. The law gives property owners reasonable time to clear the premises of snow and ice.
Of course, the area where you fell will change – with the weather. If at all possible, you should take pictures of the hazardous conditions, marking them with both the time and the date.
To pursue a premises liability claim, the owner of the property must be identified. Did you fall on commercial property? Was a government entity or a church responsible for keeping the area safe? Did you fall on residential property?
Slipping and falling on ice can be frightening and cause serious pain and suffering. However, you may not know if you can pursue legal action unless you speak with experienced legal counsel.
The weather in New Jersey can be frightful during the winter months. If you’ve slipped and fallen on ice, the Law Offices of Beninato & Matrafajlo would be happy to discuss the circumstances of your accident. There is no cost to meet with us, and no legal fees are due unless we achieve recovery on your behalf. Contact us to schedule an appointment.