Even though the first day of spring is approaching, everyone in Connecticut should realize that the cold weather is not over. Snow, ice, sleet, and other wintery conditions can always make a comeback and you should be aware of the risks winter weather can bring. Accidents and injuries occurring in poor weather conditions can be tricky, as you cannot hold the weather financially responsible for your medical bills and other losses. However, you can hold individuals who act negligently in adverse weather conditions liable and an experienced Connecticut personal injury attorney can help you make this distinction.
Winter weather and drivers are never a friendly mix. However, if someone must drive their vehicles in snow or ice, they are expected to take certain precautions. Drivers are always expected to drive in a reasonably safe manner, and what is considered to be “reasonably safe” will change depending on the circumstances. For example, you would not drive a speed limit of 55 miles per hour if there was bumper-to-bumper traffic. In those traffic conditions, you have to slow down and adjust your safe driving behaviors. The same goes for winter weather conditions.
Drivers are expected to slow down when necessary due to winter weather, leave extra room for stopping, and similar acts of caution. If a driver is going too fast on an icy road and causes an accident, they can be found liable even if they were within the posted speed limit. If you are injured in a winter weather accident, an attorney can help determine whether another driver acted negligently and can be held responsible for your losses.
Property and business owners are required to keep their premises hazard-free whenever possible – or to warn of hazards – to keep visitors from harm. For example, if something spills on the floor of a store, the store is expected to clean it up as soon as possible to prevent slip and fall accidents. Snow and ice present numerous hazards both outside and inside a store and many people can slip and fall and suffer serious injuries.
Connecticut has specific laws regarding snow and ice removal, so these cases differ from normal slip and fall cases. Under the “ongoing storm doctrine,” business and property owners are not expected to continually clear ice or snow during a storm but instead, have a reasonable amount of time after the end of the storm to do so. However, some owners still fail to make their premises safe after a storm, so claims arising from this type of slip and fall do occur and you should speak with an attorney if you have been injured.
The personal injury attorneys at the Law Offices of Piazza, Simmons & Grant understand how to handle winter weather injury cases under Connecticut law. We can evaluate your rights, so please call 203-348-2465 or contact us online today to schedule your free consultation to learn more about how we may be able to help you.