Sunday, December 20, 2009

Personal Injury - The December 2009 Blizzard

One of the things that makes being a lawyer interesting is that you need to learn a wide variety of things.  If applicable to your case, you need to learn medicine, engineering, and -- meteorology.

We just had our first blizzard of this Winter, so this is my snow-related post.  Cases involving slip and falls on snow and ice require developing a theory as to why a third-party is responsible for the  person who slipped's injuries.  You could end up, a summer or two from now, trying to explain to a mid-July jury that snow starting late-afternoon on Saturday December 19th, fell lightly for a while, then took a break after about an inch, picked up again as it got dark, and by Sunday afternoon there was 26" on the ground in Suffolk out on Long Island, and 11" in the City.

The theory could be that a driver didn't take extra care on an icy road; or that someone failed to shovel or plow a public sidewalk; or shoveled but didn't salt, leaving ice behind; or - if temperatures rise above freezing, as they are supposed to - didn't salt after a partial thaw to prevent black ice from forming from the re-freeze.

So, there's the legal angle, but talking about injuries is depressing.

Snow is fantastic.  It looks cool, it's fun to play with. For a little while, you can pretend you are out on a glacier (glassy-er) with Bear Gryllis; on Hoth or some othe Sci Fi Ice Moon; or foraging with primitive man during the ice age.  You can do something romantic with your wife, make a fire and smores, go sleigh riding, have hot-cocoa, or take your dog out to play.  The blizzard coincided with the US airing of the newest Doctor Who special, "Waters of Mars." And, there's going to be snow on the ground for Christmas!

For a brief video describing my services as a Suffolk County Slip and Fall or Car Accident Attorney, click this link.


* How to Protect Your Legal Rights If You Slip and Fall On Snow and Ice
* Slip and Falls on Snow and Ice
* Should I Hire An Attorney?


* Long Island Legal News, "Slip/Trip and Fall Appellate Division Decisions." 
* Huffington Post, "2009 Blizzard As Seen From Space." 
* Slaw, "The Law of Winter."
* NY Times, "Commuters Still Feeling Effects of Snow."