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As Britain recovers from  the freezing weather, the transport infrastructure grinding  to a halt and the roads, pavements and other public areas are turning  into ice rinks, there is the possibility (almost an inevitability) of it happening all over again in the coming weeks.  It’s a stone cold certainty that accidents may occur due to slips on ice. If you, a relative or a friend has slipped on ice and has suffered some form of personal injury as a result, it might be possible to claim injury compensation.

As with any personal injury claim, in order for a compensation claim for a slip on ice to be successful, someone other than you must be demonstrably at fault for the slip. Obviously, you can’t hold anyone responsible for weather conditions which are evidently not within anybody’s control!  Equally though, after the onset of winter weather it should be just as apparent that icy conditions pose an obvious risk.  Therefore, there are occasions when it can be argued that some agencies or organisations owe a duty of care to take reasonable steps to minimise that risk. That could include the council gritting roads and pavements or an employer gritting staff car parks and entrances.

Image: .curt., FlickR

If you slip and injure yourself on ice walking on a public pavement or crossing the road, it may be possible to claim compensation for any injuries that you have sustained from the local council. Whether your compensation claim is successful or not will often depend on the severity of the weather conditions, the location of the slip and just how “reasonable” the measures taken by the council were (if they took any action at all).  The “reasonable steps” taken by many local authorities seems to be grit the main arterial roads but leave the residential side streets and the pavements for Torvil and Dean to practice on!

If the weather is generally fine but you happen to slip on a small patch of ice, a successful compensation claim is much less likely.  Equally, if there is widespread ice on a busy pavement in a town centre you stand a better chance of claiming compensation than if the accident happened in a quiet residential cul-de-sac.

If you have slipped on ice at your place of work, it could be possible to make a compensation claim against your employer for the injuries that you have suffered.  This is far more clear cut that slipping on ice in public spaces because your employer has a legally defined duty of care to ensure that your place of work is safe and secure. In icy conditions, your employer should make sure work areas such as car parks, entrances and walkways are gritted to minimise the risk of employees and visitors suffering injuries due to slips on ice.  If that is not done, your claim for compensation could be successful.

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