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Winter home hazards and premises liability

On Behalf of | Feb 24, 2024 | Personal Injury |

Whether you’re a homeowner or a tenant in a Texas rental property, the winter season carries risks that can create dangerous situations. In fact, many winter hazards or issues can result in accidents or personal injury. It’s important to be aware of potential danger and to know where to seek support if problems arise.

There are both indoor and outdoor hazards in winter. Homeowners and renters must be prepared to deal with sudden drops in temperature, including potential snowfall, which has occurred in various Texas regions in recent years. If you rent a home, your landlord is responsible for making sure the heating system is functioning properly and that walkways and parking lots are safe to navigate.

Space heaters can create fire hazards

There are tools and devices that help reduce risks during winter. For instance, as a homeowner, you can use shovels or snowblowers to keep stairs and sidewalks clear of snow and ice. Inside a home, many people use space heaters to supplement their heating systems or in place of a heating system, if the system needs repair. While such devices are helpful, they can also be dangerous, especially if homeowners or renters do not use them properly. It is never safe, for example, to leave a space heater unattended.

You must also be cautious about the area surrounding a space heater, making sure there are no flammable materials nearby. If you are nearby, you might notice that there’s a sock on the floor or blanket hanging off a bed, or draperies, that are too close to a space heater. Moving the heater to a safer location could prevent a house fire. However, if you turn on a space heater and leave the premises, a fire might ignite if the heater isn’t working properly or there are flammable materials nearby.

Winter accidents and injuries may create premises liability

Texas property owners must ensure a reasonably safe environment for invited guests and visitors. If you are on someone else’s property and a winter accident occurs due to the property owner’s negligence, you may have grounds for filing a premises liability claim in civil court. If you are a property owner, you’ll want to make sure you have fulfilled all responsibilities for maintaining safety on the premises.

Whether you’re a homeowner, a tenant, a landlord, store owner or other property owner, if you have questions regarding winter hazards and premises liability law, you can discuss the issue with someone who understands the personal injury litigation system.