Much was made in Winter 2010/11 about the liability of someone who clears snow from a pathway where someone later slips and falls. So much so that the Government intervened stating
"it is extremely unlikely that someone who has attempted to clear snow in a careful manner will be sued or held legally responsible if someone slips or falls on their property."
"people walking on snow and ice have responsibility to be careful themselves."
It is advised that the importance is placed on not making the area more hazardous than before - i.e by using hot water to clear ice or snow which will later re-freeze creating black ice - always use salt or, preferably, grit.
Business owners do not have the same choice as owners of private residential properties where they may choose whether to clear snow or ice from their property.
There is a clear duty of care to the customer placed on the operator of the business to clear the publicly accessible areas of their premises. It is more likely that a business will be held responsible for a slip on ice or snow where it is perceivable that they would have known of the hazard and done nothing about it.
Occupiers' Liability Act 1957; Health and Safety at Work (Northern Ireland) Order 1978 (HSWO)
The rock salt mined in Northern Ireland comes from a huge, cavernous mine which stretches 30 miles under the Belfast Lough and surrounding countryside up to 1,200 ft under the surface. The Carrickfergus mine extracts up to half a million tonnes of rock salt every year
The seam is part of a rock salt bed stretching to Russia. It was discovered in the 1800s as miners searched for coal deposits.