Manning v. S.R. Weiner Assocs., Inc. et al

Court's Memorandum of Decision Denying Defendant's Motion for Summary Judgment

by Scott Camassar
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This personal injury case arose out of injuries suffered by the plaintiff when she slipped and fell in the parking lot of a movie theater in Lisbon, CT during a snow storm. The defendants are the property manager and snow removal contractor, who filed a motion for summary judgment seeking to end the case on the grounds that they owed no duty to the plaintiff. The crux of their argument was that there was an ongoing snow storm at the time of the fall; that they had no obligation to have cleared the parking lot of snow; but that nevertheless they had plowed, salted and sanded at various times throughout the day, including shortly before the accident. The defendants provided an affidavit purporting to detail the activities of the snow plow contractor on the date in question. Contrary to this evidence, the plaintiff, her husband and her granddaughter all testified that they did not observe any salt or sand in the area of the fall. The plaintiff argued that the Motion for Summary Judgment should be denied because there was a genuine issue of material fact as to whether there was salt or sand in the parking lot at the time of the her fall. A Connecticut Superior Court judge agreed, and denied the motion for summary judgment.

In this case, it was undisputed that the defendant’s plow trucks were in the parking lot at the time of the incident. The plaintiff testified that she got out of her car with her granddaughter and starting to walk toward the movie theater entrance. She testified that she could tell the lane had been plowed but that there was no salt or sand in the area, and that the slippery condition of the plowed lane is what caused her to fall. Her husband also testified that there was no salt or sand in the parking lot where her fall occurred, and the plaintiff’s young granddaughter, who was holding her hand when she fell, also testified that there was no sand or salt in the lot. The plaintiff's evidence was that although the lot was plowed slick, the defendant did not apply sand or salt in the travel lane in which the plaintiff fell. Since there was a dispute about whether sand or salt had been applied, there was a genuine issue of material fact that would preclude summary judgment.

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Reference Info: Decision | State, 2nd Circuit, Connecticut | United States

DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

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