When snow and ice come this winter, businessowners have the responsibility to keep their locations safe. If they don’t clear the snow and ice within a reasonable timeframe, they open themselves up to potential slip and fall accidents.

One in every four slip and fall claims are due to snow and ice

Customer slip and fall claims average $15,132

Employee slip and fall claims average $35,132

Zurich Insurance Group

While laws vary state to state, many claims come down to determining if the property owner or renter took reasonable steps to prevent injuries.

So what information should you be tracking in order to fight slip and fall claims?

Provider insurance

In some cases, not only is the businessowner liable, but so is the provider who serviced the location. You should be sure that every service provider you hire is properly insured.

So, if you’re sourcing them yourself, you’ll need to collect their insurance certificates and endorsements.

If you work with a maintenance company to handle snow and ice management across all your locations, ask them how they track insurance for their provider network. You should also expect that they have additional insurance themselves.

Record of services

You’ll need to have a detailed record of all snow and ice management services in order to prove you took the reasonable steps to keep your locations clean. For additional proof, your record should include before and after photos of each service as well as time stamps proving when the service was completed.

Weather data

Having a historical record of all winter storms that resulted in snow or ice will help fight claims. You should be able to look back at any date and determine the amount of snowfall or ice that accumulated across your locations. This weather data should tie back to your record or services—including the timestamps—to prove that measures were taken within a reasonable time to remove the snow and ice.

With the proper steps, you can help keep your locations safe for both your employees and customers. But in the case that you do find yourself with a slip and fall claim, it’s important to proactively track the right information.

At SMS Assist, we track this information for our customers to help them mitigate claims. Plus, we provide a $60 million insurance policy, so they’re always covered.

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