As a Vancouver personal injury lawyer slip and fall injury claimants often call my personal injury law firm suffering serious injury after slipping on ice or snow in front of a private residence. The  new bylaw  requiring homeowners to clear snow from  their sidewalks before 10 a.m. may shift some of the legal burden to the homeowner if a person is injured by slipping  on ice or snow that should have been cleared by the homeowner.  I have posted on slip and fall ice and snow cases before and would add that homeowners now need to be aware that:


76. The owner or occupier of any parcel of real property shall, not later than 10:00a.m. every day, remove snow and ice from any sidewalk adjacent to such parcel for a distance that coincides with the parcel’s property line and for the full width of the sidewalk.

76A. If an owner or occupier of any parcel of real property fails to remove snow and ice, as required by section 76, the City Engineer may authorize the removal by another person and the costs of such removal shall be at the expense of the owner or occupier as the case may be, and the city may recover such expense by action in a court of competent jurisdiction.

Vancouver city has provided some information about the new bylaw but even the top personal injury lawyers in Vancouver are now, at best,  left with the task of putting this law into practice in a personal injury case, should someone  slip and fall due to the negligence of the homeowner .
Keep in mind that it is not the law that steps must be taken to avoid all accidents. The top legal standard imposed is one of reasonable conduct. No one, including a homeowner,  is required  to act so to rule out any and all possibility of an accident , including a slip and fall on a sidewalk (Swift v. MacDougall, [1976] 1 S.C.R. 240). The question is whether the homeowners took reasonable care to ensure that the sidewalk  was reasonably safe while snow and ice was likely to be present. Posted by Mr. Renn A. Holness

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