Winterizing a home and property against brutal winter conditions means prevention.
Some ways to help winterize your house – and property – include:
- Trim trees and remove dead branches around the house so they do not fall on someone or create an obstruction that could lead to a slip and fall injury.
- Disconnect garden hoses from outer faucets, then drain and store safely so they are not left to create icy drainage or form an icy obstacle that could lead to a slip and fall injury.
- Drain water from the swimming pool per manufacturer or installer directions. Avoid adding antifreeze to these lines.
- Let the faucets supplied by exposed pipes drip slightly if you are experiencing colder than normal conditions. This helps prevent freezing pipes as well as a big mess if the pipes burst, which can create hazards around the home.
- Keep your property free of ice and snow that cause slip and fall accidents, or chunk of ice that may fall on people.
The Colorado Premises Liability Act
In Colorado, the Colorado Premises Liability Act (CPLA) covers injuries that occur on the property of another person (Colorado State Code 13-21-115). The law defines a landowner as “…an authorized agent or a person” who has possession of a property as well as a person who is legally responsible for the state/maintenance of that property.
The person who is responsible for activities or circumstances that occur on the property may have some form of liability.
Basically, landowners are liable when they fail to provide tenets or visitors with a reasonable standard of care for the condition of the property. That’s why it’s so important to maintain your home during the winter when weather conditions may create new hazards.
Meanwhile, if you were injured on another party’s property, you must prove that the landowner’s negligence resulted in your injury. The existence of a hazard on its own is not sufficient. You must establish you slipped on an icy sidewalk, for example, and were injured.
Sometimes, time concerns can be an issue for the injured party when it comes to proving negligence. If a hazardous situation occurred right before an injury, the landowner can’t be expected to have corrected that condition back to a reasonable standard of care. So if the sidewalk was icy at 4 a.m., and the conditions that lead to the ice occurred overnight while the homeowner was sleeping, it’s unreasonable to expect the homeowner to have corrected it by 4 a.m. when the accident occurred.
A lawyer can help clear up your concerns and tell you if you have a reasonable expectation of collecting damages for medical bills, lost wages, and more. D.J. Banovitz can provide a FREE legal consultation for Arvada residents injured on a negligent party’s property. Call today at 303-300-5060 or fill out our contact form.