Maintaining your walkways, steps and driveway for safety purposes is a responsibility of all home owners. When we think of sidewalk and driveway safety, we may first think that mostly applies to winter months when the snow and ice builds up. As a homeowner, you realize that your mail carrier expects safe access to your mailbox and children walking to the bus stop or school should be able to walk safely on a freshly shoveled and ice-free sidewalk. Cities can fine homeowners for not maintaining safe walkways, but more importantly, you don’t want anyone to be injured while walking on your property. Maintaining safe walkways and driveways is the right thing to do, plus, it gives your home better curb appeal.
In winter, you want to prevent a family member or other pedestrian from a serious slip and fall and, in addition, keeping your walkways slip-free will protect your expensive asphalt, concrete or pavers. When water gets down in the cracks in your pavement, it expands and freezes, cracking the pavement around it. This problem can be avoided by keeping your sidewalks and driveways shoveled and swept to keep the snow and water out. Also, before the winter season begins, make sure you patch and repair any cracks, inspect and repair hand rails and stairs, and consider a using non-skid treatment on your pavement. The simple task of resealing your walkways and driveways on a regular basis can save thousands in expensive repairs. Non-slip surfaces should be in lighter colors and when used around a pool, choose a non-abrasive material with a border color that easily defines the edge of the pool.
Lighting is another addition you can add to your walkways and driveways that can help reduce slips, falls and trips. Outdoor lighting also adds curb appeal and keeps your home safe from unwanted intruders. There are many options today for outside lighting including solar lighting that automatically comes on at night and is easy and inexpensive for homeowners to install themselves.
The overall condition of a driveway or walkway is the biggest factor in preventing trip and fall accidents. It is important to inspect your property each season to make sure there are no uneven surfaces or cracks that could catch a toe and send someone to the ground. If you find cracks or uneven pavement, they should be repaired immediately. In addition, keep your walkways free of any tree branches, lawn tools, toys or other debris that could cause someone to trip.
Each year, thousands of people are injured in unnecessary slips and falls throughout the country. Do your part as a homeowner to keep your driveways and walkways as safe as possible by keeping up with proper maintenance and following a few simple safety tips. If you’re in need of a legal consultation, call us today at 231.347.4444 or fill out the free consultation form in the sidebar to schedule your free personal consultation.