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Autumn Weather and Treacherous Slip and Falls

By Hardwick & Pendergast, P.S. on September 6, 2021

Autumn leaves on wet sidewalk.

Autumn weather brings with it a lot to be grateful for, including Halloween, back to school sales, and cooler weather, yet there are also certain unique dangers with it. Seattle seasons almost always include a touch of rain, but autumn sparks the beginning of Washington’s truly rainy weather and wet sidewalks. Coupled with falling leaves, pedestrians must be extra careful when visiting local businesses, as walkways, entrances, and sidewalks can become the sites of serious slip and falls.

Autumn Fall Hazards to Watch Out For

Slip and falls are always a risk in Seattle, but autumn brings with it some unique dangers that pedestrians may not think to watch out for. For one, the cooler weather means more rainfall and wetter sidewalks. All it takes is one misstep for a jogger or runner to fall backwards on hard concrete and suffer a serious injury.

Another major issue is the increase in vegetation and leaves. Plants may dry out during the summer but grow larger during autumn, leading to more overgrowth on sidewalks. Roots and vines should be cut back to keep walkways clear of hazards. The same can be said about leaves, which may become incredibly slippery with rainfall and make it harder for pedestrians to keep upright on hard concrete.

In contrast to the increase in vegetation, Seattle also sees less daylight and proper lighting in outdoor areas. Whether you are heading into an office building or crossing a parking lot to a mall, you may find yourself relying more and more on streetlamps and exterior building lights to navigate pathways. If a business or property owner is not vigilant about using bright lights and replacing burnt out bulbs, an innocent customer may trip on cracks, vegetation, or random debris.

Lastly, an often overlooked element of pedestrian safety is the increase in holiday decorations. Whether a business has place stands outside a building or has decorated their entranceways with holiday lights, guests can end up tripping on loose cables or equipment. Decorations should be carefully placed outside a business without impeding paths and entrances so that guests can safely enjoy them.

What Can Property Owner Do to Prevent Falls?

Property owners should always keep fall safety in mind when managing a property or store, including outside a store on sidewalks. By properly cleaning up walkways, safely tucking cables and wires away, and making sure paths are well lit, property owners can keep pedestrians safe from slip and falls. However, failing in these procedures can also result in serious injuries.

If you were injured in a slip and fall due to a property owner’s negligence, you may be able to pursue a premises liability claim for compensation. At Hardwick & Pendergast, P.S., our Seattle personal injury attorneys have decades of experience standing up for accident victims and are well-versed at recovering proper compensation from big insurance companies. We can investigate the nature of your fall, collect evidence of negligence, and go to work negotiating with an insurance company for compensation. Call Hardwick & Pendergast, P.S., at (425) 228-3860 and toll-free at (888) 228-3860 to get started on your claim with a free consultation.

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