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Is a restaurant liable if I slip on snow or ice in their car park?


During winter months, the threat of suffering a trip, slip or fall in public becomes a very real possibility. Though we mostly stay indoors during the coldest times, dangers still lurk when we head out for professional or social purposes.


Restaurant accidents – slips, trips and falls

Of course, adverse weather conditions are no reason to become a hermit. In fact, some good, hearty food in the right company can be just the ticket on a cold winter’s evening. Providing, that is, that the occasion passes off without any public accidents occurring and painful injuries being suffered.

Should the worst happen, it’s both important and reassuring to know that help is at hand.  Public injury compensation is available for those who suffer accidents in public that:

  1. Occurred in the last three years
  2. Caused injuries that required medical attention
  3. Were demonstrably the fault of someone else

One typical example of a wintertime accident would be suffering a slip on snow or ice in a restaurant car park. In this scenario, who, if anyone, is responsible and what, if any, compensation is due?

Well, the safety of guests and visitors is the responsibility of the restaurant management and owners. Under Public Liability Law, they have a legal obligation to either eliminate or minimise as far as possible any potential threats to public safety. This means things like signs for low ceilings and raised floors ought to be in place, as well as training staff to deal with incidents such as spillages at work quick and efficiently.

In terms of ice in the car park, that’s a difficult question to answer and it really depends on the circumstances. Whilst the management of the restaurant cannot be expected to control the weather, they ought to be able to anticipate it, especially during wintertime, and put certain measures and procedures in place.

For example, warning signs can be used to alert customers of the conditions and the pathways can be gritted for extra stability. However, sometimes, the car park is not even actually owned by the same people who manage the restaurant, in which case they are not liable.

If you think you have a claim for public injury compensation, then call Accident Advice Helpline using the freephone advice service today. Our expert legal team has years of experience in injury claims and works on a no win no fee basis.