What are the Winter Hazards and Slip and Fall Accidents in Westchester County?

The weather in New York is famous for its hot summers, flowery springs, beautiful autumns, and picturesque winters. People travel here year-round to absorb our perfect climate, as well as our famous culture. However, with all that beauty, it’s easy to overlook common slip and fall hazards that plague residents and tourists alike.

Fortunately, Gash & Associates has created a list of the most common slip and fall hazards our clients have encountered during the winter months in Westchester County. While discussing these hazards, we’ll provide tips to prevent them and also explain the property owner’s responsibilities in each scenario.

It’s important for residents of White Plains, or just those visiting, to be aware that victims of slip and fall accidents can pursue compensation when the property owner’s negligence is a factor. We’ll explain that a bit more as we go, but for a personalized consultation that answers your direct questions, call Gash & Associates, P.C. today.

Winter Slip and Fall Hazards in White Plains, NY

  1. Snow Accumulation: Heavy snowfall can cover pathways, steps, and driveways, hiding tripping hazards.
  2. Icy Surfaces: Melting snow can refreeze, creating icy patches on sidewalks and parking lots.
  3. Black Ice: This is a thin layer of ice on surfaces that isn’t easy to notice. It’s especially dangerous because people may not know they’re walking or driving on it.
  4. Poorly Lit Areas: With shorter daylight hours in the winter, there are more chances of slipping in the dark if public areas are not well-lit.

Tips for Preventing Slip and Fall Accidents

  1. Wear Winter Shoes: Choose boots and shoes with good traction. Anti-slip soles can provide extra protection.
  2. Walk Carefully: Take shorter steps, walk slower, and keep your hands out of your pockets to maintain balance.
  3. Use Handrails: Handrails should be provided in walking areas where slipping or tripping might be expected. If these are missing near steps or doorways, it could be an indication of negligence on the part of the owner.
  4. Stay In Well-Lit Areas: Whenever possible, choose pathways and well-lit areas. Burned-out bulbs in parking lots and alleyways can make it more likely for a person to trip.

Property Owner’s Responsibilities in Winter Slip and Fall Accidents

In Westchester County, property owners are responsible for keeping their areas reasonably safe for visitors. During the winter months, this includes snow and ice removal. When owners fail to remove snow or ice, they can be held accountable for the related slip and fall accidents that occur.

After a snowfall, property owners should promptly remove snow and ice from sidewalks, driveways, and parking lots. They should then use salt or sand to prevent ice formation and provide traction. Commercial properties should immediately display warning signs that indicate where water or ice has accumulated during business hours. They must also provide adequate lighting in parking lots and near entrances to prevent accidents.

Pursuing Compensation for Slip and Fall Accidents

Victims of slip and fall accidents in Westchester County that were caused by winter hazards can pursue compensation if the property owner’s negligence is a factor. The property owner will be considered negligent if they knew or should have known about the hazardous condition but failed to address it in a timely manner. This compensation could include medical expenses, lost wages due to time off work, or even pain and suffering.

Call Gash & Associates, P.C. at (914) 328-8800 today for a free consultation with an experienced slip and fall attorney who can help with your case.