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Slip and Fall Plaintiff Contends Poor Snow Removal Caused Accident


On January 15, 2006, a woman left her home in Queens, New York. She was walking and it was snowing in a heavy fashion. She stated that she had seen five inches of snow on the banister of her home’s steps when she walked down them. A New York Injury Lawyer said she woman walked past two houses on her way to the supermarket. She stated that she had gotten home from work the night before and that it had been snowing and there was ice on the sidewalk. When she was in front of the house owned by the defendant and his wife, she tripped on something in the snow and fell (slip and fall). Her ankle was twisted badly and she could not get up to continue on to her location or to go back to her own house just two houses away. She testified in court that she sat on the sidewalk in front of the defendant’s house for two hours in a blinding snowstorm until she was found and helped. She stated that she had tripped on old ice that was piled up under the new snow. As she sat there, she examined the ice and found that it was old and blackened with dirt from melting and refreezing.

The defendant has filed a motion for summary judgment in his favor dismissing the complaint against him. He maintains that there was no snow accumulated in front of his residence. He and his wife testified that they shovel the snow in front of their residence as soon as the snow accumulates there. They maintain that they were never notified by the city that there was an accumulation in front of their home that needed to be removed. Queens Personal Injury Lawyer they further stated that until the notice to appear in court, they did not know anything about anyone falling in the snow.

In support of their claims, the defendant produced climatological reports for the two weeks prior to the incident. The woman claimed that she had noticed the ice on the sidewalk in that location a couple of weeks before and that the defendant’s had failed to remove the ice. The defendant’s refute that claim by stating that after shoveling snow, they are always conscientious about applying salt to the sidewalk to make sure that ice does not form. The climatological reports showed that while it got down below freezing at night on several of the nights, prior to the snowstorm of that date, the days were warm and any snow or ice that was on the ground would have melted. Since this evidence creates an atmosphere of doubt surrounding the survival of any ice on the sidewalk for two weeks prior to the accident, it is doubtful that the woman tripped on any old ice.

Since the weather was too warm for the preceding two weeks for ice to have remained on the ground, the ice that was on the ground must have been fresh or recent ice. The woman claimed that on her way home the night before at about eight in the evening, it was snowing and hail was falling. Because the snow and ice had fallen all night, and the woman herself stated that there was about five inches of snow on her own banister, it is reasonable to assume that the snow and ice that caused her to fall had occurred overnight and in the early morning hours. Staten Island Criminal Lawyer said that means that the defendants did not have a reasonable amount of time to shovel the sidewalk before the woman walked down it. The court found in favor of the defendants and granted a summary judgment to dismiss the case against them.

Stephen Bilkis & Associates has Queens Personal Injury Lawyers in convenient offices throughout New York and Metropolitan area. Do not suffer from a personal injury because of the negligence of others. Queens slip and fall Attorneys can provide you with advice if you have been injured.

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