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Shaky Grounds: Pea Gravel Around Fire Pit is Open and Obvious and Does Not Present Special Aspect

Premises Liability / December 13, 2017

In Duffy v Kinnamon, the appellate court made clear that the special aspects exception to the open and obvious doctrine contemplates only extreme, limited situations. In Duffy, contrary to Plaintiff’s assertions, the pea gravel around Defendant’s fire pit did not create an unreasonable risk of harm. Plaintiff could have avoided the risk of slipping on pea gravel by appreciating that pea gravel shifts, and further, by exercising caution while walking or standing close to the fire pit. This fact scenario and ruling aids in the defense of claims involving falls due to unstable or shaky grounds.

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