Slip and Falls: Ice and Snow Removal Cases

Slip and fall accidents are rooted in premises liability law. Property owners owe a duty to people on their land. The liability for slip and falls depend on the visitor’s status and whether they were invited or they were trespassing.

Slip and fall claims arise out of a variety of reasons including, ice and snow accumulation, unlit spaces, liquid on floors, loose carpets, defective elevators, and foreign objects on floors. In cold climates, ice and snow accumulation cases are not uncommon.

Snow and ice can be very dangerous. Sometimes, ice is barely visible to the naked eye. If someone steps on slippery ice, there is a good chance they will slip and fall on the hard concrete.

Pennsylvania slip and fall cases can involve failure to remove snow or ice from sidewalks or walkways, failure to remove snow or ice from parking lots, failure to remove snow or ice from driveways, failure to clear snow or ice from parking lots, or the failure to keep entry ways clear of snow or ice.

In Pennsylvania, possessors of land are generally required to remove any accumulation of ice and snow. The Pennsylvania courts require the victim to prove that “hills and ridges” were present in such a way that the ice and snow unreasonably obstructed travel on the walkway. Whether or not there were sufficiently dangerous “hills and ridges” is a question of fact, which will generally be determined by a jury.

The walkway had to be bumpy so that it made it difficult to navigate the space. Because the determination of all slip and fall cases will depend on the circumstances surrounding the fall, it is important to be able to describe the situation. It will be important to describe the condition of the walkway, why the condition made walking dangerous, and that the slip and fall victim was acting in a reasonable way before coming into contact with the ice and snow.