In September of 2013, the United States Court of Appeals of Kentucky heard a case involving a Kentucky slip and fall matter. (See Barker v. Northcutt, 2013 WL 5305755 (Ky. App. 2013)). The defendant filed a motion for summary judgment and for the reasons listed below, the court reversed the lower court’s ruling and denied the motion. (Kentucky slip and fall attorney Andrew Alitowski can explain to you this)
The Kentucky slip and fall accident occurred on January 11, 2010. The plaintiff slip and fell during the evening while attending a visitation. Id. The evening was cold and snowy. Id. The parking lot was full when he arrived so he parked in the back. The employees were spreading calcium to melt the ice every 15 minutes.
The Kentucky slip and fall plaintiff left and when he existed the rear he slipped and fell on ice before sliding about six feet. After he fell he could see that ice was present. So, he shortly thereafter called a Kentucky slip and fall attorney.
“In Kentucky, a danger is “obvious” when “both the condition and the risk are apparent to and would be recognized by a reasonable man in the position of the visitor exercising ordinary perception, intelligence, and judgment.”” (cites omitted) “Whether a natural hazard like ice or snow is obvious depends upon the unique facts of each case.” (cites omitted).
There is a Kentucky law that ‘a duty voluntarily assumed cannot be carelessly undertaken without incurring liability therefore.’ (cites omitted). “however, with regard to outdoor natural hazards, we perceive a distinction where a business owner undertakes reasonably prudent measures to increase the safety of the premises, such as was done in this case, and a business owner who undertakes measures which, in fact, heighten or conceal the nature of the dangerous condition such as occurred in Estep.” Id.
The court stated that “we are of the opinion that it is against public policy, and even common sense, to impose liability on those who take reusable precautions if such does not escalate or conceal the nature of the hazard, while absolving those who take no action whatsoever. Id.
In the case at hand, the plaintiff did not see that ice was present until after he fell. Accordingly, summary judgment was premature because there is an issue regarding the obviousness of the hazard prior to the Kentucky slip and fall plaintiff falling.
If you have been the subject of a Kentucky slip and fall case, please call and speak to a Kentucky slip and fall attorney at the Law Offices of Andrew Alitowski, P.A. at 888-ASK-ANDREW (888-275-2637) or contact us. We are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
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