With the winter period upon us, the level of compensation claims for slips and falls on ice will inevitably rise, but who is to blame for such accidents?
In personal injury claims, the burden of proof lies upon the Claimant, therefore it is up to the person that has suffered the accident to prove that it has occurred.
Did the accident take place on a pavement?
If the accident took place whilst walking along the pavement outside, it’s likely that the local Council would be responsible for the area in question. The Highways Act 1980 states that the highway authority is under a duty to ensure, so far as is reasonably practicable, that safe passage along a highway is not endangered by snow or ice.
It would, however, be unreasonable to suggest local authorities are able to grit or clear all areas of snow, especially when the icy conditions are sudden. Instead, they will usually prioritise areas with high footfall based on the resources they have available.
Did the accident take place at work?
Employers should be carrying out risk assessments to ensure that the workplace is safe from hazards. Regulation 12 (3) of the Workplace (Health, Safety and Welfare) Regulations 1992 states that so far as is reasonably practicable, every floor in a workplace and the surface of every traffic route in a workplace shall be kept free from obstructions and from any article or substance which may cause a person to slip, trip or fall.
Accordingly, each employer should be taking steps to ensure the work area is free from ice as best as possible or potentially provide you with the appropriate clothing and footwear if such hazards are unavoidable.
Did the accident take place on private land or a shop entrance / car park?
Under the Occupiers Liability Act 1957, any individual or business which has control over their premises owes a duty of care to their visitors.
Private property owners and businesses must have a reasonable system of inspection in place to prevent hazards on their land. To be successful in these types of cases, you will also likely need to prove that the hazard was foreseeable and that they failed to act on this.
Personal Injury Solicitors East Yorkshire and Lincolnshire
At Bridge McFarland LLP, our specialist solicitors can provide expert advice and guidance if you or a loved one has been involved in an accident that wasn’t your fault.
To find out more about making a claim and receive the support you need, contact Bridge McFarland LLP today by calling 0800 987 8800 or email email@example.com. Our dedicated team is ready to assist you in seeking the compensation you deserve for your accident.