Premise Liability After Hurricane Sandy

The recent destruction to the East Coast by Hurricane Sandy has left many people without power, heat, and food.  These are the lucky ones as many have completely lost their home.  Hungry and cold consumers have been heading into restaurants, stores, and cafes to escape the cold of a home without lights and power. Some of these businesses, however, have opened prematurely.  By opening before being ready they have put consumers at risk of injury while on their property.  Whether parking lot flooding, downed power lines, flickering lights, or slippery floors – many businesses are no safer than your own home after a storm.

During inclement weather, and after, consumers need to exercise caution when deciding where to go to get out of the storm. These storms can often leave people without power and cause flooding.  Next time you find yourself in a storm look for these cues to determine which business is safe for you and your family to find relief.

  1. Trees.  Look around the business at the surrounding area.  If it is located near large trees it may not be safe.  Strong winds can cause trees to snap and fall on buildings or in roadways – blocking your exit.
  2. Fire codes.  It is important for a business to follow fire codes even during a storm.  While they may want to provide shelter to more people than they can fit – it leads to other safety problems.  If too many people are crammed into a building they will not be able to safely escape in the event of a fire.  When people panic it can lead to being trampled upon and further injury.
  3. Flooding.  Are streams, rivers, or the coast located nearby? If there is a chance that the water could reach that level – do not stay there during a heavy storm.

Keep your family safe during a storm by making sure that where you go for shelter is safer than the home you left.

Maguire Law Firm is a personal injury law firm located in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina.  For more information, please visit us at


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