With Winter Coming, Know Your Snow Removal Responsibilities

With the Sabres on the ice, a cool crispness in the air and the leaves cluttering the ground throughout the region, it’s a sure sign that winter is coming up fast and we are about to be bombarded in snowfall. While snow can be beautiful at times, it can also be a hassle – especially when it comes to cleaning it up!

Snow Removal RulesIf you are an owner or occupant of a dwelling in any snowy area, know that it is your responsibility to keep the front of your residence clear. Don’t delay when it comes to removing snow and ice because many ordinances, including those in Buffalo and Amherst, require that you clear the sidewalk in front of your home. In Buffalo, for example, sidewalks are required to be clear before 9 a.m., when the streets are at their busiest.

Snow removal and keeping sidewalks clear is important wherever you live or work within Western New York. This goes for any amounts of snow and ice, even if it is hard to remove. These codes state that tough ice that cannot be removed must be covered with ashes or sawdust to provide traction until such time that the ice can be removed.

What happens if you fail to do so? Well, to start, if you refuse to remove your snow or are otherwise unable to oblige, in most situations the city or town will send out workers to clear the sidewalk and bill you for the expense. There may also be fines or other penalties involved as well. Plus, even worse, if someone is injured while traveling across your sidewalk, you can be held liable under the law for your failure to keep sidewalks clear.

Use Proper Removal Methods

Possibly more important than actually removing the snow is how you choose to remove it. There are many codes in these counties that state how you can and cannot remove snow from your premises, and not following them can be costly.

In Buffalo, for instance, you are not allowed to shovel your snow onto any public street, and you are not authorized to use any mechanical device (plow, rotary brush, etc.) on any public street either. Sidewalks are protected as well, as you cannot use salt, lime or any other such substance to clear off snow or ice because these materials can be dangerous for the sidewalk itself.

No matter where you live, remember to keep the sidewalks and public streets clear of your snow. It is not only required by many city ordinances, but it is also an excellent way to keep your community safe.

Staying safe is a top priority of clearing sidewalks, but it’s also important to know what to do if the unfortunate happens. If you slip on someone’s sidewalk or driveway due to another person’s negligence, it is important to find a personal injury attorney that will fight for you. At the Law Offices of Richard S. Binko, we have dealt with a wide range of personal injury cases, and we can work with you to help put together the best case possible to pursue your claim for injuries sustained on another’s icy or snow-covered sidewalk.

We provide legal defense for much more than slips, trips and falls, including cases of daycare accidents, dog bites, defective products, medical malpractice and more. If you were hurt and need legal assistance, don’t delay – call the Law Offices of Richard S. Binko at 716-895-5500 today.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *