Slip-and-fall injuries are the most common claims associated with snow and ice removal.
Fall injuries are the number one, year-around risk for both employees and guests. But winter ice and snow exponentially add to both the risk of injury and the complexity of a claim.
Fall injuries are also the number one injury risk for invited guests. The average çost of a claim is $50,000, and typically average $75,000 to $115,000 for claims involving hospitality, food service, building service, health care and government/school.
Falls can be particularly dangerous for older adults. About 36 million falls are reported among older adults each year—resulting in more than 32,000 deaths. More than 3 million seniors are treated for fall injuries in hospital emergency rooms each year. Many fail to ever recover the mobility and independence they enjoyed before a fall accident, which can significantly increase the costs associated with these types of claims.
All totaled, more than 25,000 people a day suffer a fall injury, costing $3.5 million an hour, according to the National Safety Council.
Trade lobbyists and insurance companies have long lobbied for more protections and have been successful in a number of states.
Whether a plaintiff is an invitee (customer) or licensee (social guest) will also impact the duty owed by a property or business owner or manager. A third category, trespasser, enjoys few protections but immunity of a property owner is not absolute. The statute of limitations also varies in these cases, depending on where they are filed..
The demand for expert witnesses in slip-and-fall cases relative to snow and ice has grown exponentially in recent years as states have continued to shift the burden of proof to plaintiffs.
Areas where our extensive knowledge and experience can make the difference include:
Snow and ice management and mitigation is an incredibly complex process and consulting with Allin / Rose Consulting, Inc., where these issues have been our exclusive focus for more than half a century, is among the best things you can do to help build a winning outcome for you and your client.