What Snow Contractors Can Do to Prevent Slip and Fall Claims
Updated: Jan 24, 2019
Winter weather in Ohio causes many Trip and Fall claims. With the snow and ice conditions here, the public is constantly falling in shopping centers, condominium complexes, strip centers and commercial buildings.
It is important as a contractor who performs Snow and Ice Management Services to do things to reduce the chance of you being held negligent or legally liable for someone’s injuries from a trip and fall claim.
The reality is that most trip and fall claims are investigated and closed with little or no payment, if the snow and ice removal contractor maintains certain responsibilities.
Here are tips to reduce your chances of being negligent in a trip and fall claim:
Review Your Contract: Always review your contract to make sure you understand your responsibilities under the contract. You need to understand what services you are to provide and when you are to provide them. If you are under contract to snow plow at 2 inches or higher, you are held to that standard in a claim. The first request from a claims adjuster will be to review a copy of your snow plow contract with the customer to see what you are responsible for and if you complied with the contract.
Document, Document, Document: It is a best practice to document as many details as possible during a snow event. Information such as the date and times you plowed and/or salted the property, the weather at the time you plowed and where you put the snow piles are some of the key items that will be needed to help you in a trip and fall claim.
Pictures (and Video) are worth a 1,000 words: Taking pictures of certain areas that are prone to trips and falls during a snow event is recommended. Or taking pictures of a completely plowed/salted lot with a date and time stamp could also help prove you actually performed the required services in the contract. You may also want to consider putting a camera on the front and rear of your plow vehicles to record video of you plowing or salting an area.
All of the above items could be used to help prove you are not negligent for a trip and fall claim at a customers premises. The insurance company will use the information to help get the claim against you dismissed and ultimately keep your insurance costs down with less paid claims.
For more information on the types of services that Botson Insurance Group provides to snow contractors visit our website at www.botsoninsurancegroup.com/snow-plowing-insurance.