All business owners in West Virginia must comply with the Occupational Safety and Health Act and maintain a safe environment for all entrants, including employees and clients. However, many business owners forget that this rule encompasses not just the building but also the parking lot. By remembering the following four tips, however, owners can keep the parking lot from being the site of injuries.
First, they will want to ensure good traffic flow. The National Safety Council states that there are 50,000 parking lot crashes every year. With clearly marked parking lots, directional arrows and signs, the risk for accidents can go down. Crosswalks and handicap parking spaces should also be highly visible. Striping and paint will help identify two-way traffic.
Exterior lighting is important for visibility, too. Owners should install lighting behind the building, near the entrance and over the dumpster area. By performing regular maintenance checks, they can spot any lights that have burnt out. Trees and shrubs should not be allowed to obscure the lighting.
The last two tips are crucial to preventing slips, trips and falls. Potholes should be filled in and cracks should be sealed. In winter, owners should remove snow leading up to the building and de-ice the parking lot. A maintenance crew could take care of this step.
If a patron has been hurt on a business parking lot, they may be able to file a premises liability claim against the owner. By consulting with a lawyer, a victim could find out if they are eligible for compensation. A successful claim might cover losses like medical bills and pain and suffering. Legal counsel may assist with negotiations.