We Welcome Winter, Not Slip and Falls
Freeze warnings have already been issued this year for El Paso County and Colorado Springs, as reported in The Gazette. In Colorado, the average date of the first fall freeze is October 1. With the drop in temperature comes widespread frost and a higher chance of snow showers. Anyone who has spent time in the Centennial State during the winter months knows the hazards of walking on icy, snow-packed roads and sidewalks. Slip-and-fall accidents due to winter conditions can cause serious or catastrophic injuries.
Falls are the leading cause of traumatic brain injury (TBI) in the United States. TBIs can have long-term consequences for victims and their families. In addition to brain injury, slip-and-fall accident victims may suffer:
- Hip fractures
- Back and spinal cord injuries
- Shoulder injuries
- Fractures, sprains, and dislocations
Safety Tips to Help Prevent Falls
Getting around the city on foot becomes more difficult during winter. While all pedestrians are at risk for slip-and-fall accidents, seniors age 65 and older face a higher risk of serious injury. Pedestrians in Colorado also face the risk of being injured in a collision with a motor vehicle. Practicing the following safety tips can help reduce the risk of a serious accident and keep you safer during the winter months:
- Wear proper footwear: Your boots or shoes should be designed to reduce the risk of falling on slippery surfaces and should be properly maintained.
- Don’t talk on the phone while walking: Pedestrians who are distracted are more likely to slip and fall or be involved in a deadly collision with a motor vehicle.
- Stay visible to drivers, day and night: Wear bright, reflective clothing. Attach reflective patches or stickers to your bag and jacket.
- Travel as light as possible: Avoid carrying heavy items that could cause you to lose your balance and fall.
- Keep your head up: Stay focused on the path ahead in the direction you are traveling.
- Plan your outings: Try to go out during the daylight hours when weather conditions are better. Allow more time during the winter months, so you can proceed with caution to avoid falls.
Who Is Responsible for Snow Removal in Colorado Springs and Denver?
Residential property owners in Colorado Springs have a duty to clear walkways for which they are responsible within 24 hours after a snowfall ends. Commercial property owners or occupiers have until 5 p.m. the following day to remove snow and ice after a snowfall ends. In Denver, property owners are required to remove snow and ice immediately after the end of every snowfall. A property owner, occupant, or agent who is negligent in keeping walkways clear could be liable for injuries that someone else sustains in a slip-and-fall on their premises.
If you have been hurt in an icy slip-and-fall, contact The Bussey Law Firm, P.C., at (719) 475-2555 as soon as possible. Our Colorado Springs personal injury lawyers can help you pursue the maximum compensation for your losses.