Snow and Ice Accidents
Here in Oklahoma, we have plenty of snow and ice in winter. For children, snow and cold weather is an opportunity to build a snowman and go sledding. However, winter weather also means a lot of opportunities for snow and ice accidents.
Snow and ice contribute to thousands of motor vehicle accidents in Oklahoma every winter. If you are a pedestrian, you are also likely to get injured in winter due to slippery and unplowed sidewalks, parking lots, and walkways.
If you have been injured due to adverse weather conditions in winter, contact our Ponca City snow and ice accident attorneys at Boettcher, Devinney, Ingle & Wicker. We have extensive experience in representing clients – both motorists and pedestrians – in winter weather accident cases to help them obtain the compensation they deserve.
Common Types of Snow and Ice Accidents in Oklahoma
Drivers and pedestrians can suffer a serious injury in the following types of winter weather accidents involving snow and ice:
- Slippery sidewalks, walkways, and stairs
- Unsalted walkways and roadways
- Unplowed roadways and sidewalks
- Dangerous parking lots
- Accumulation of snow and ice
- Icicles and lumps of snow falling on people from buildings
- Slip and fall and trip and fall accidents
- Car accidents caused by failure to reduce speed for weather conditions
- Car crashes caused by failure to maintain a safe following distance in winter
- Hydroplaning accidents
- Snow and ice falling from other vehicles
Depending on the type of snow and ice accident, a victim can sustain the following types of injuries:
- Traumatic Brain Injuries (TBIs)
- Spinal cord injuries
- Broken and fractured bones
- Sprains and strains
Who is responsible for snow and ice accidents involving pedestrians?
Many people tend to blame bad weather for their winter weather accidents. However, in many cases, another person or entity can be held responsible for causing or failing to prevent a snow and ice accident.
While the State of Oklahoma does not have specific laws regarding a property owner’s duty to remove snow and ice from their properties, many cities and municipalities have ordinances that place liability for winter weather accidents on property owners and occupiers.
Note: The Ponca City Code of Ordinances § 9-1-1 requires owners and occupiers of residential and commercial properties which adjoin a sidewalk or walking area to keep the sidewalk or walkway in “good condition” and “safe for pedestrian use.”
While property owners cannot prevent the natural accumulation of snow and ice on their sidewalks, parking lots, and walking areas, they can take reasonable precautions to remove snow and ice within a reasonable time frame.
What counts as “reasonable” is determined on a case-by-case basis, which is why it is vital to consult with a knowledgeable personal injury attorney in Oklahoma to help you determine liability for your snow and ice accident.
Who is responsible for snow and ice-related car accidents?
Snow and ice contribute to thousands of car crashes every winter in Oklahoma. It is critical to examine the reasonableness of the actions of everyone involved to determine liability for a weather-related car accident.
Drivers must take extra reasonable precautions in winter weather, such as driving slower than usual and increasing the following distance due to the risk of hydroplaning. Again, whether or not a driver acted “reasonably” depends on the circumstances in each case.
If you have been injured in a winter-related accident due to snow or ice, do not hesitate to speak with our Ponca City snow and ice accident lawyers to determine liability in your unique case. At Boettcher, Devinney, Ingle & Wicker, we are committed to helping injured victims seek maximum compensation for their injuries. Call 580-765-9660 to receive a consultation.