Even though the pandemic has significantly increased the amount of virtual workdays, interactions, and purchases, the fact remains that winter weather adds an increased level of risk to our health and safety. Snow, sleet, and ice can be a sinister combination, and it helps to be prepared in case an accident does take place. Let’s take a closer look at some of the frequent injury claims we handle during the winter season:
Common Winter Accident Claims
Car Accidents and Icy Conditions
The first thought that most people have when they see an ominous weather forecast is the stress of driving on snowy and icy roads. These sentiments are not unwarranted, as nearly 20 percent of all vehicle accidents in the U.S. take place in winter weather conditions. It is imperative for drivers to reduce their speeds, give extra space to surrounding vehicles, and spend a little more time planning their route in order to avoid potential accidents and injuries. Failure to do these things can dramatically increase the chance of an accident, which can subsequently make you liable for an accident claim.
Premises Liability Accidents (Slips and Falls)
While the images of people slipping on ice and twirling through the air with limbs flying may be dramatized and comedic, the reality is that these accidents can be disastrous, especially for the elderly. Property and business owners should invest in a snow blower or a good shovel as well as some ground salt, as it is their duty to clear public walkways within a reasonable timeframe following a storm. This doesn’t have to be a completely clear sidewalk, just enough to provide a safe pathway for those passing by. If an individual suffers injuries after a slip and fall on an uncleared sidewalk or entrance, they may be eligible for a premises liability claim.
Nearly 70 percent of the country’s population lives in an area that is affected by winter weather, which means that work must continue as best it can. As such, there is an increased risk of falls and other accidents for construction and trade workers (and anyone else who primarily works outside). Ironically enough, even the act of removing snow from precarious surfaces such as platforms, scaffolding, and unfinished structures can be a safety risk. Foremen and construction companies must be very vigilant in terms of expectations, directions, and equipment, because if they condone or encourage unsafe practices, or if they do not provide the proper winter gear and equipment, they could be liable for extremely expensive accidents and workers’ comp claims.
Protect Yourself This Holiday Season
Sometimes accidents are unavoidable, but oftentimes a little prudence can go a long way during the winter months. In order to stay on top of the conditions, be sure to regularly check local news weather forecasts so you can be prepared in the event of a storm. For your sake as well those passing by, shovel and salt your walkways and driveway. If you are elderly or otherwise limited in your mobility, plan ahead and try to have people drive you to where you need to go, or for others to complete errands for you. Lastly, always dress appropriately for the weather, including heavy jackets and winter boots with good soles to help protect against potential falls.
Injured in a Winter Accident? Call Van Law Firm Today
If you need help recovering compensation after suffering injuries in a wintertime accident, don’t let the negligence of others ruin your holiday cheer–instead, call the experienced team of personal injury attorneys from Van Law Firm. We have the expertise and resources to handle any claim, including auto accidents, premises liability, workers’ compensation, and much more. Call our office nearest you to get started with a no-cost, no-obligation consultation.