The defendant homeowner hired an independent contractor to clean windows, including a skylight. As the contractor’s supervisor returned to the ladder he had climbed to tell workmen to use less water in cleaning the skylight, he fell off the roof. He sued the homeowner for injuries sustained in the fall. This opinion holds that under Kinsman v. Unocal Corp. (2005) 37 Cal.4th 659, a landowner who hires an independent contractor can be held liable for injuries caused by open and obvious hazardous conditions of the property if the independent contractor cannot cure by taking reasonable safety precautions. Here, the defendant’s evidence on summary judgment did not eliminate the question of fact as to whether the obvious hazard of the unprotected ledge of the roof from which plaintiff fell could reasonably be avoided by taking a different route across the roof or by any other reasonable means, so summary judgment was reversed and the case was remanded for trial.
California Court of Appeal, Second District, Division Seven (Zelon, J.); February 6, 2018, WL 718528.