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IL injury lawyerAnyone who lives in the Midwest knows how brutal the winters can be. Illinois residents in particular have likely experienced blizzards that dumped several feet of snow in relatively short periods of time. Along with snow comes wind, ice, slush, and sleet during the winter months. Although tripping or slipping and falling outside can occur at any time, the likelihood of this type of accident is usually higher in bad weather. Just as it can be dangerous driving during a snowstorm, walking outdoors can pose its own risks, too. However, Mother Nature may not be the only one to blame. In some cases, any injuries suffered may be due to the negligence of a property owner.

Cold-Weather Maintenance

Inclement weather can wreak havoc on road pavement. That is why the Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) sends fleets of snowplows out during snowy days and nights. Clearing streets is crucial to prevent cars from sliding and drivers losing control and colliding with other vehicles or even pedestrians. Likewise, it is imperative that property owners take the necessary precautions during the winter months in order to keep their guests or visitors safe. This may include plowing parking lots, shoveling sidewalks, putting salt down on icy walkways, and more. If they do not perform this type of maintenance, they may be held liable for any injuries suffered on their grounds.

Another safety and security measure that all building managers or property owners should take is replacing any broken or burnt-out lightbulbs that illuminate their grounds. Since it gets darker earlier in the winter, it can be difficult for patrons to see where they are going, causing them to slip on ice or fall in a pothole. Additionally, burst pipes can cause a flood, resulting in frozen water throughout a public area where people might be walking. Falls on icy concrete can range from minor bumps and bruises to severe head trauma and broken bones.

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IL accident lawyerBeing safe or worrying about your safety is not something that often crosses our minds. Most of the time, we just assume we will be safe when we go to a store or stay in a hotel. There is an infamous saying about assuming -- mainly, that you should not do it. But by law, business has a responsibility to reasonably prevent accidents or crimes from occurring on their property. This is known as premises liability and is the responsibility of the owner or operator of an establishment. By law, we should be able to assume that we will be safe when we are walking through a parking lot or when we are shopping at a store. Premises liability cases can be complex, especially when dealing with negligent or inadequate security cases.

Examples of Negligent or Inadequate Security

When it comes to premises liability, the laws can be complex because there is so much that is left up to interpretation. The general consensus is that business owners have a responsibility to keep their premises safe for you. Examples of negligent or inadequate security include:

  • Insufficient lighting in hallways, parking garages, parking lots or stairways;
  • Lack of security cameras;
  • Broken locks or locking devices, such as key locks in a hotel;
  • Insufficient security guards or staff;
  • Insufficient visitor screening for establishments like hospitals or schools; and
  • Hiring or keeping employees with violent backgrounds.

Obviously, certain places will be more likely to experience crime or accidents when there is inadequate security. Typically places that are popular or that host a high volume of people are more likely to suffer from inadequate security claims. These types of establishments include:

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