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Woman says city's dangerous property led to her concussion

If a person in Pennsylvania falls on property that has not been kept up by the property owner, this is grounds for a civil suit. One woman in a recent out-of-state case filed a lawsuit against a city after she said she slipped and fell on an icy area on public property. The city was found guilty of negligence in this case involving dangerous property.

The woman said the incident occurred when she was walking to a downtown building in which she worked. Snow remained compacted on the sidewalk she was using, and fresh snow ended up covering up the old snow one day in February. The layers of snow had concealed a patch of ice below.

The woman said she lost her balance due to the ice and fell backward. Her head reportedly struck the ground, causing a concussion that required her to endure a long recovery period. The woman sued the city, and a judge recently determined that the city's public works employees had not completed the necessary snow removal in the area for more than 20 days prior to the incident; in fact, the city had not followed its own bylaws for clearing snow. In addition, a railing located along the sidewalk was rusty and falling over, thus making it unusable.

Based on the judge's determination, the city must pay damages to the woman. Any person who suffers an injury on dangerous property that was not appropriately maintained has the right to explore all of his or her legal options in Pennsylvania. A monetary award may be helpful for covering medical treatment costs and for addressing emotional distress as well as pain and suffering stemming from the incident.

Source: thespec.com, "Hamilton guilty of negligence in slip-and-fall lawsuit", Emma Reilly, May 29, 2015

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