Sidewalk conditions that are left in disrepair, like potholes, can cause the individual to slip or trip.
Another cause can be related to sidewalk upkeep. For example, in a typical Reno winter, you get icy conditions and a property owner needs to keep their property safe for pedestrians. If a sidewalk is in front of your house, you’re responsible to maintain that sidewalk. A homeowner needs to use reasonable efforts to keep it safe. For example, let’s say you shoveled the public sidewalk in front of your house and you put ice melting rock salt on it. Maybe you did the length of the sidewalk, but there’s a small area where you still have ice. Even if it’s without your knowledge, despite your efforts, then that’s more of a question of whether or not you met the standard of care. It could be very fact-dependent.
Stairwells can be very dangerous when not properly maintained. A certain restaurant here in Reno comes to mind where they don’t have any handrails down these two steps, and the tiles on the bottom of the steps match the tiles on the top, so it’s really hard to recognize that. That’s a recipe for slip-and-falls at that restaurant.
A restaurant or landlord may try to limit their liability by placing a warning near the hazardous condition. Just because there is a “Watch Your Step” sign doesn’t mean that they are not going to be liable for slips and falls there. In fact, the opposite may be true because they know it’s a dangerous condition and they know they have to fix it, and all they’ve done is to put up a sign that may or may not be visible to passers-by.