Premises Liability — Pittsburgh Snow and Ice Accidents Lawyer
Our injury attorneys know that snowy Pittsburgh winters can be as dangerous as they are legendary. As snow piles up, melts and refreezes, walkways, steps and parking lots can become covered in slick sheets of ice. It’s up to property owners to remove snow and ice in order to provide safe passage for those who use the space. But all too frequently, such areas are neglected and allowed to get worse.
If you suffer an injury while on someone else’s property, you may be entitled to compensation. Please contact the Pittsburgh injury attorneys at Hal Waldman & Associates today at (412) 338-1000 to schedule your free case evaluation.
The most common type of snow and ice accident is the slip and fall accident. In such situations, accumulated ice and snow reduce or eliminate one’s traction, leading to a potentially life-threatening fall. Some of the most common injuries in slip and fall accidents related to snow and ice include
- Traumatic brain injury
- Back injury
- Spinal cord injury
- Broken bones
- Wrongful death
Under Pennsylvania’s premises liability statutes, a person entering a landowner’s property is classified as an invitee, a licensee, or a trespasser.
- A trespasser is someone who has not received permission to be on the property, e.g., an intruder. Trespassing, however, does not necessarily imply intent to do wrong. Something as simple as crossing railroad tracks at a location other than a designated crossing can be considered trespassing.
- A licensee is someone who has express or implied permission to be on the property but does so for his or her own gain. Door-to-door salespeople are classic examples of licensees.
- An invitee is someone who has the landowner’s express or implied permission to enter and remain on the property. Invitees usually include friends and family, but may also include contractors hired to perform work on the property.
Generally speaking, trespassers enjoy the least protection under premises liability law, invitees enjoy the greatest protections, and licensees are somewhere in the middle. Even trespassers, however, are protected in situations in which the landowner is found to be wantonly and willfully negligent. Wanton and willful negligence simply means that the landowner knowingly allows his or her property to become unsafe. It implies some level of indifference to the well-being of those who enter the property.
Obviously, premises liability law is nuanced and complex. If you or a loved one has been hurt in an accident involving ice and snow, you may be able to recover damages from the negligent party. Please call (412) 338-1000 today to arrange your free consultation with the Pittsburgh injury attorneys at Hal Waldman & Associates.