Ice Slip/Fall Case Survives Summary Judgment

From Jones v. New York City Hous. Auth., 2018 NY Slip Op 00027 (App. Div. 1st Dept. Jan. 2, 2018):

Defendant established its prima facie entitlement to judgment as a matter of law in this action where plaintiff was injured when he slipped and fell on ice. Defendant submitted evidence, including the testimony of its supervisor of caretakers that the sidewalks abutting its building were free of ice and snow when he arrived at the building on the date of plaintiff’s accident.

In opposition, plaintiff raised triable issues of fact as to whether a hazardous icy condition existed and whether defendant had notice of that condition. Plaintiff’s climatological expert opined, after reviewing relevant climatological reports, that snow had ceased falling two days before plaintiff’s accident, but snow and ice would have remained on the ground in untreated areas on the morning of his accident, thus giving defendant sufficient time to discover and remedy the hazardous ice condition (see Massey v Newburgh W. Realty, Inc., 84 AD3d 564 [1st Dept 2011]). Plaintiff also testified that before he fell he saw ice covering part of the sidewalk. He described the ice that he saw after his fall as “[b]rownish” and “dirty,” thereby raising issues as to whether the icy condition had been on the sidewalk long enough to clear it before the accident (see Perez v New York City Hous. Auth., 114 AD3d 586 [1st Dept 2014]; Wright v Emigrant Sav. Bank, 112 AD3d 401 [1st Dept 2013]). Furthermore, contrary to defendant’s contentions, plaintiff identified the cause of his fall, since he testified that he saw ice on the ground when he looked sideways, when he fell, face down, onto it.

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