Salting and customer complaints. What would you do?

lawncarebycurt

Junior Member
Location
St. Clair Shores
I have a small (2 truck) lawn and snow company.

I plow some small commercial lots. I also salt those lots.

Lately I've been getting complaints that I salt too often and I should only salt when ice is present.

My concern is that if I don't salt when it snows (1/2" of less) that someone could slip and fall and I'd be responsible for the potential injury.

How would you deal with this type of customer?
 

leigh

PlowSite Veteran
Location
CT
Talk to them,have an open conversation about what their concerns, expectations are, explain the liability issues. Is it a cost issue. If they want to control the salting have that in writing, that you salt at the direction of the client. If there's a trigger, say one inch, then you don't service so can't be held liable(maybe). If you're not comfortable with the outcome walk away, it's not worth the anxiety.
 

MSsnowplowing

PlowSite.com Addict
Location
Eastern CT
Talk to them and explain the liability issues and if they still don't want you to salt those times write it in the contract your not responsible for any slip and falls and make a log book entry for that day that they refused salting and take pictures.

Then if there is a slip and fall, your covered and it falls back on them.
 

Luther

PlowSite Veteran
Location
Michigan
Since he was asked this already and hasn’t responded it might be safe to assume he has no written contract? Or if he does he hasn’t addressed this to be done by his discretion.
 

cjames808

Senior Member
Location
SE WI
Well the contract should include salting puddles of course.

Are you sure you aren’t jumping the gun?

We are curious to how many times you salted in a month? 10-20-30-40?
 
I'm thinking the hell with what they want, if there is a slip and fall there coming after you regardless what the contract states. They will also go after your client. Your both plucked like a chicken if a incident occurs.

Negligence is what it is in a court of law, especially with ambulance chasers..
 

cjames808

Senior Member
Location
SE WI
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Jacobmb

Senior Member
Location
Toronto, Canada
My contract states that the contractor is required to salt after each snowfall or not according to future weather predictions and ground temperature. If we do not have a plowable event I can still salt my commercials as the contractor also reserves the right to apply salt as needed at any time. This means I can salt before a freezing rain event - or to melt off a dusting of snow. I also leave bins of salt always filled up on site in case the client isn't happy with the amount of salt I am putting down - they are free to use it (and pay for refills). When I provide an estimate to a property I include an estimated tonnage of salt required per application and estimated number of services (usually 40) so they can expect a range of what they will be spending on salt in addition to plowing estimate.

Residential clients complaining about salt is usually that there is not enough being put down, not the other way around. Unless you are billing them for each time you put salt or they are worried about their driveways getting ruined I don't see what homeowner would ever complain about too much salt (save for people with interlocking, sensitive shrubs, new sod). For the clients that bust my balls about not enough salt I include a bag of salt delivered to their front porch begining of the season and they are free to put more down should they require it. We include salt in our residential contracts, to be put down following every plowing event. It is billed in the price and not per application since it is a pain in the ass to track salt usage per house per storm and I don't want to spend anymore time in my office than necesarry.
 

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