It’s a common concern that if a homeowner clears snow and ice from around their house and a person falls - they can be held responsible and even sued.
The Met Office issued a Snow Code stating: “Don’t be put off clearing paths because you’re afraid someone will get injured. Remember, people walking on snow and ice have a responsibility to be careful themselves.
“Don’t believe the myths, it’s unlikely you’ll be sued or held legally responsible for any injuries if you have cleared the path carefully.”
However a spokeswoman for the department of transport couldn’t rule out the possibility of legal action.
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She said: “People are advised to use common sense.”
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Follow these tips issued by the Met Office to prevent slips:
Pay extra attention to clearing snow and ice from steps and steep pathways - you might need to use more salt on these areas
Use salt or sand - not water
Don’t make the pathways more dangerous by causing them to refreeze. If you use water to melt the snow, it may refreeze and turn to black ice. Black ice increases the risk of injuries as it is invisible and very slippery.
You can melt snow or prevent black ice by spreading some salt on the area you have cleared. You can use ordinary table or dishwasher salt - a tablespoon for each square metre you clear should work.
Don’t use the salt found in salting bins - this will be needed to keep the roads clear unless your council advises otherwise.
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