For many Americans, Memorial Day weekend is the first big celebration of the summer. Barbecue grills will be fired up and beers will be flowing. While most Memorial Day parties are fun and safe events, there are occasions when accidents happen and people are injured. The Chicago premises liability attorney team at Lerner and Rowe has some valuable advice if you’re hosting a Memorial Day party or are attending one and you’re concerned about liability.
Memorial Day Safety for Party Hosts
As you prepare for your get-together, consider taking photos or even making note of the ways you exercised “reasonable care” in making your backyard safer. If your Chicago premises liability attorney is not going to your cookout, here are some ways to protect your guests—and yourself—from litigious liability.
- Adult supervision – Appoint a rotating team of one to three adults to oversee children at play during your cookout, especially near the grill or fire pit. Stop activities like sword fights with marshmallow sticks before they begin.
- Grills – Position grills with an imaginary fence in mind that keeps people 10 feet away from the grill site to help prevent burn injuries. Additionally, leaning your bag of charcoal against the grill is one of the leading causes of barbecue fires—avoid this habit. When you have finished grilling, douse coals with water after they’ve had time to cool for a bit.
- Pets – Your precious pup is friendly and wouldn’t hurt a flea! We believe you, but it may be difficult to explain that to your friend whose ankle just became a chew toy for your 195-pound Rottweiler. Secure pets where children and even adults won’t be at risk.
- Standing water – Rural Indiana and even Chicago-area properties sometimes have standing water spots. A breeding spot for mosquitoes, standing water also poses slip-and-fall risks. Of course, dump any containers with standing water, including the rain-filled tarp covering your fishing boat. Position temporary ground-covers or simply rope off areas with standing water in your yard.
- Swimming pool – Limit the number of guests in your swimming pool to an amount your dedicated lifeguard can monitor. Also, ensure that there are plenty of flotation and rescue devices immediately available.
- Swing sets and outdoor play equipment should be level and anchored. Check tree houses and play equipment for splinters, cracks, or exposed hardware. If you have a trampoline, be sure to anchor it well. Limit the jumpers to one at a time, and require supervision at all times. Remove ladders when not in use.
Chicago Premises Liability and Party-Crashers
Ensuring the safety of your guests and property may feel like a lot of responsibility for some. As a result, you may choose to spend your holiday at someone else’s party. However, we suggest against “crashing” a stranger’s cook-out because they could consider you to be a trespasser. That has the potential to complicate matters if you find yourself injured on their property.
Visitors to anyone’s property are usually classified as:
- Licensed to work or visit
You may think a property owner owes no responsibility to trespassers (except children), but even that can get complex. If you find yourself hurt on someone else’s property, especially if your status as an invited guest could be questionable, you can’t handle these situations on your own! A Chicago premises liability attorney can sort through the legal maze of liability and accountability.
Memorial Day Safety for Party Guests
If you will be spending your Memorial Day on someone else’s property, you will want to protect yourself from injury during your visit. Here are some examples of slip-and-fall causes to keep on eye out for that may be on your or another’s property:
- Broken/cracked sidewalks
- Faulty stairs
- Loose extension cords
- Unsecured rugs/carpets
- Wet/oily flooring
If there is any Memorial Day weekend incident in which you suffer an injury, you need to contact a Chicago premises liability attorney immediately. Lerner and Rowe’s legal team can help you pursue compensation for medical expenses, time off work, damages, and more.
Sometimes, even if the accident site was unsafe, it doesn’t mean the property owner was negligent. As the injured party, you will need to prove the property owner knew about an unsafe situation and did nothing to remedy it. Our lawyers have extensive experience proving that property owners neglected to take precautions and endangered visitors.
Contact a Chicago Premises Liability Attorney
Lerner and Rowe Injury Attorneys has been serving Chicago injury victims for more than 30 years. We offer free consultations and do not charge any fees unless we win your case. In addition to our established track record of billion-dollar results, our team takes tremendous pride in treating our clients with the compassion and respect they deserve. Our staff is committed to helping clients carry the emotional burden of their injuries so that they can focus on recovery.
In a Wreck? Need a Check?™ When you’re worried and have questions, you don’t have to wait for our 8:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. office hours. Our LiveChat is available 24/7 or you can call us any time of the day or night at 708-222-2222.