The end of summer is here and as we well know, winter is just around the corner. For Edmonton injury lawyers, we know that winter spells slip and fall season, primarily for our elderly population. Even a simple walk outside in our frigid weather can spell disaster for some Albertans.
The Canadian Institute for Health Information states that approximately 42 per 100,000 Alberta residents were hospitalized annually after slip and fall accidents between the years of 2011 and 2016. Further statistics reveal that falls result in over 200 fatalities each year in Albert with 4 percent of these as a result of weather conditions. It is the second highest rate in the country.
Weather is Often the Culprit
According to Dan Kulak, a meteorologist with Environmental Canada, our icy winter conditions tend to be more persistent for several reasons. Our weather tends to be more prolonged and we bounce between above freezing and below freezing weather. We also experience quite a bit of freezing rain.
Here in Edmonton, unlike other cities and provinces, our snow and ice is the responsibility of home and business owners. Taking responsibility for the removal of that snow and ice ensures that we all are safe when moving about the city. Rules governing snow and ice removal are as follows:
● Failure to maintain your walkways can result in a $100 and cleanup costs.
● Warnings do not always need to be issued.
● The property owner is responsible for clearing snow from each walkway or driveway on or adjacent to any vacant property after a snow stops.
● If a neighbour is not able to maintain their walkway, consider helping out.
Our freeze-thaw cycles may cause melting water to run onto sidewalks and then freeze. In Edmonton, you are required to keep all walkways safe by removing ice or spreading sand. Free sand is available at roadway maintenance yards. When you are removing snow, make sure to pile it where it will not melt across your walk. Aim any downspouts from your home away from adjacent walks. Remember that it’s illegal to pile your excess snow on public property which includes roads.
Be a Good Neighbour
Remember that as a property owner or renter, you are legally responsible for keeping your property safe. This is called “duty of care”. If someone is injured on your property due to any negligent lack of this care, you can be held responsible for any injuries that the victim sustains. Be a good neighbour and help cut down on our slip and fall accidents here in Alberta.
If you have been injured in a slip and fall accident, you may be entitled to compensation for your injuries. You owe it to yourself to get the legal opinion of an Edmonton injury lawyer. Call the legal professionals at BPCAB Personal Injury Lawyer for a no-cost consultation.