Duhaime's Law Dictionary

Storm in Progress Rule Definition:

A doctrine of personal injury law excusing a property owner for injuries occurring before the owner has had a reasonable chance to address hazards created by a storm.

Related Terms: Volenti Non Fit Injuria, Occupiers' Liability

In Marchese v Skenderi, the Appellate Division of the Supreme Court of the State of New York held:

"Under the so-called storm in progress rule, a property owner will not be held responsible for accidents occurring as a result of the accumulation of snow and ice on its premises until an adequate period of time has passed following the cessation of the storm to allow the owner an opportunity to ameliorate the hazards caused by the storm."

In Ioele v Wal-Mart, Justice Lehtinen wrote:

"[L]ulls or breaks in a winter storm, such as the three-hour lull in the instant case, do not amount to a cessation of the storm which would impose the duty on a defendant to clear snow and ice. Consequently, defendant's duty to correct hazardous snow and ice-related conditions created while the storm was in progress was suspended until a reasonable period of time had elapsed from the cessation of the storm."


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