Snow, Ice & Sleet Cause Slip & Fall Injuries in Kansas City
Winter weather like snow, ice and sleet can cause slip and all injuries that may result in serious, traumatic injuries. Even though winter weather in Kansas and Missouri can be severe, property owners need to be aware of their legal duty to provide safe premises for visitors.
Slip and fall accident victims need to be aware of their legal rights, especially if they fall during the winter. Our Kansas City slip and fall attorney can review your case to determine if you have a valid premises liability claim for a winter slip and fall accident. Call us today at 816-203-0143 for a free, no obligation consultation.
Duty of Care During Winter Weather in Kansas & Missouri
Even though freezing rain, snow, and ice cannot be prevented, property owners owe a duty of care to customers and invitees to take steps to prevent slips and falls on their property. A business owner is expected to take reasonable steps to clear snow and ice to prevent falls.
An owner can use salt, sand, or other measures to reduce the risk of a fall. They can also post warning signs and place rugs inside doors to help reduce slip and fall accidents. Some cities or towns in Kansas and Missouri have enacted laws related to clearing snow and ice. Property owners are expected to understand all laws governing their property.
Determining whether a property owner is liable or at fault for a slip and fall accident because of snow, ice, or freezing rain depends on numerous factors. An experienced Kansas City slip and fall injury lawyer needs to review all circumstances and factors involved in the accident to determine whether you have a claim against the property owner for damages. A Kansas City personal injury lawyer can tell you what to do after a slip and fall, help you navigate the legal system, and negotiate a fair settlement on your behalf.
Common Winter Slip & Fall Injuries in Kansas & Missouri
Because winter weather can make surfaces extremely slippery, the risk of falling increases during the winter. Slipping on a slick surface can result in traumatic injuries. Even though you might be walking slowly across a slick surface, your feet can slip out from under you, causing you to fall on a hard surface.
Common injuries sustained in winter slip and fall accidents include:
- Fractures and broken bones
- Neck and back injuries
- Shoulder injuries, such as torn rotator cuffs
- Spinal cord injuries
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Back injuries
- Broken ribs, ankles, and wrists
- Sprains and strains
Some winter slip and fall injuries may result in permanent disabilities or impairments. For some accident victims, it could be months before they can return to normal activities. Some individuals may require surgery and extensive physical therapy before they are ready to return to work and full activities of daily living.
What Should I Do After a Winter Slip & Fall Accident?
If you are injured in a fall this winter, there are several steps you can take to help prepare to file a personal injury claim for your damages. Steps you should take after a winter fall include:
- Report the fall immediately to the property owner or a representative of the property owner, such as a manager on duty
- Ask eyewitnesses and bystanders for their names and contact information
- If possible, take pictures and make videos of the accident scene, including the weather conditions, lack of warning signs, whether there are rugs, etc.
- Go to the doctor immediately. You need to document your injuries as soon as possible for your claim. As you continue to recover from your fall, note additional signs and symptoms of injuries and report those to your doctor as you notice them. It could take several hours or days for you to feel the full effect of your injuries from the fall.
- Keep detailed notes about your accident and injuries. Write down information about the fall, what you noticed about the accident scene, and what people said after the fall. Also, keep detailed records for all expenses and financial losses related to the fall.
- Avoid talking to the property owner or an insurance company until you speak with a Kansas City premises liability attorney. The statements you make after the accident could have a significant impact on your claim.
- Meet with an attorney to discuss your claim as soon as possible. An attorney can help you continue taking steps to protect your legal rights to seek fair compensation for your injuries.
Ways to Prevent Winter Weather Slip & Fall Accidents
It is impossible to avoid all adverse winter weather conditions in Kansas and Missouri. Therefore, it is important to take steps to avoid falls whenever possible. Some steps you can take to avoid falls include:
- Wear winter shoes with non-slip soles and good tread.
- Walk slowly and keep your arms out for balance.
- Avoid carrying packages whenever possible.
- Bend your body slightly forward when walking on slippery surfaces and take shorter strides.
- Be extra careful when exiting and getting into a vehicle.
- Use handrails whenever possible.
- Clean ice, snow, and water from shoes when entering a building.
Contact a Kansas City Slip and Fall Accident Attorney
The Law Office of Kevin J. McManus represents clients throughout Missouri and Kansas. Winter weather in both states can pose a significant risk for a variety of injuries. If you fall on another person’s property, do not assume the weather is to blame. You could have a claim against the property owner for your medical expense, physical pain, loss of income, and other damages.
To schedule a free consultation with a slip and fall attorney in Kansas City, call 816-203-0143 to speak with a member of our legal team.