or Connect
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Whos fault? - Page 2

post #31 of 45
In the park, jumper is supposed to see previous jumper ski away from the jump. If you don't see the guy who went before you, he is probably still behind the jump (fallen down). Common sense in addition to the skiers responsibility code is helpfull. If you don't know, don't go. Get a spotter.

If you are moving fast across the fall line and over-taking skier is slower in mph, he is still going downhill faster than you, he is trying to pass you, it's his fault. There are gray areas, it's not about assigning blame, more about avoiding accidents. No one wants to crash with other person, use the code, common sense and watch out for the many kooks out there.
post #32 of 45
Originally Posted by skier_j
When I learned to ski it was actually taught as part of what you were expected to do. Pass on the right---a loud "On your right!" just before you went by.

They knew you were there and when, approximatly, you would overtake them and on what side.

You never hear it anymore.
I started out that way. I still use it when I'm close, but I'm not usually that close to someone. I'm long gone by the time they realize I was there and so I can't hear them swearing at me (if they are).
post #33 of 45
Best post of the thread BillA

Our jumper clearly violates # 1 & # 2 of the Responsibility Code---and maybe # 4 (if the guy under that jump is heading toward the underside of it as our jumper takes off on his approach)
The guy under the jump violates # 3
post #34 of 45
Originally Posted by Uncle Louie
Best post of the thread BillA

Our jumper clearly violates # 1 & # 2 of the Responsibility Code---and maybe # 4 (if the guy under that jump is heading toward the underside of it as our jumper takes off on his approach)
The guy under the jump violates # 3
Skiers Responsibility Code #1:
Always stay in control, and be able to stop or avoid other people or objects.

If you take this at face value, then your feet will never leave the ground. When you're in the air, your are by definition unable to avoid other skiers and objects. Generally speaking, you should check your surroundings before starting to jump, but if something changes while in the air (e.g. somone pops out of the trees onto the landing hill of a jump), you simply won't be able to avoid it.

I'm thinking that the Skiers Responsibility Code probably isn't the best set of rules for the terrain park. Perhaps the Smart Style set of rules is a better place to start:

Scope around the jumps first, not over them. Know your landings are clear and clear yourself out of the landing area.
Start small and work your way up. (Inverted aerials not recommended).
From the lift line through the park.

Maybe some adjustments to the Skiers Responsibility Code should be made. "Don't stop where you can't be seen" should be given extra emphasis in the park. I know even when severly injured a smart park rider will do their best to clear the landing zone. (I sure did even though my landing was rough enough to require an ambulance ride.)
post #35 of 45
The legal issues involved in skier to skier collisions can be either very clear or pretty complex and the laws and history of case law varies tremendously from state to state.

Therefore, the individual cases have to be examined in the courts on a case by case basis. However, even states that have laws that tend to see some risk of collision as inherent in the sport (e.g., California) also have statues or case law that outline conditions of extreme negligence (skiing while drunk, etc.).

However, one thing that all skiers should be aware of is that liability is not just limited to civil cases. There have been several cases where skiers who have hit other skiers are prosecuted criminally as well as sued civily. I think at least one Colorado manslaugter case related to a collision is still in the courts.

And an increasing number of states or counties are starting to have have criminal law covering these issues. You don't have to actually hit someone either. In some cases the ski patrol can arrange for criminal prosecution for negligent behavior (fines, and / or jail time) without any actually injury or damage.

Inadvertent bumpings are one thing, but I think that at a certain point it becomes like seeing some cocky jerk weaving in and out of traffic at highj speed and putting everyone at risk. If we wouldn't accept it on a highway, why should we look the other way because the person that is ripping through a crowded intermediate slope at 40 mph is on skies instead of in a car.

By the way, blue slopes are where the highest average speeds occur - depending on the study the average speed on many blue slopes is between 35-45 mph.
post #36 of 45
Some random thoughts, probably not really directed to the people who post and read here, but just getting them off my chest:

1. 50 mph is very, very fast, and ordinarily you shouldn't be skiing at 50 mph in an area where there are skiers moving at 10 mph, or where there are enough skiers moving that you ever get remotely near one.

2. Your perception of safety in passing from behind, even when correct, is radically different from a skiing novice's, and overtaking and passing close to a novice sometimes causes the novice to crash: His or her (incorrect, but real) perception is that there was a near collision he must recoil from. I once chased down a snowboarding instructor at Park City for wiping out my son just that way.

3. If you are being overtaken on a regular basis, try to be predictable: if you signal your turns with a pole touch, or even have a regular rhythm to your turns, I think you're less likely to get hit.

4. Don't stop on narrow trails or below rollers, and certainly don't stop as a gaggle.

5. Snowboarders rest lying down, and usually do so in a gaggle. They are invisible from over an uphill rise, and once you catch air off a roller you cannot change direction. What precise fault should be allocated in that combination is irrelevant--you will have a very bad day if you make someone a blood donor.

6. Yes, helmets make it harder to hear, but they allow you to continue to hear if you get hit. I got rebooted nicely once, and am still typing only because I had a helmet on when the guy hit me from behind. Before that a helmet saved me from at least a concussion in a years earlier double somersault special.

7. The skier fatality profile is an upper intermediate skiing a blue run well within his ability late in the day, very fast at the edge of the trail, who has some kind of bobble and goes into a tree. So don't do that--and it also happens to experts. (Snowboarder fatality profile is different, involves advanced snowboarder upside down in a tree bowl in deep powder, without a close by friend to dig him out. Don't do that either.)

8. Ski defensively. Don't suddenly careen left at high speed on a crowded hill full of 14 year old boys. Don't take blind jumps with no spotter on crowded hills.

9. If you fail to follow the above rules, try to be lucky. Luck certainly helps, but it's a finite resource and shouldn't be pressed unnecessarily. If you find you keep having "oh s**t" near misses, maybe it's not just the rest of the world.

Sorry--end of rant, but I think who is "legally at fault" in these situations isn't really the question.
post #37 of 45
It's called natural selection folks. Only in America does it become a discussion of legal liability.
post #38 of 45
Thread Starter 
Very good posts by BillA, skiersynergy, sfdean and otheres. This has turned into a very informative thread, thank you.

Tolocoman, I started this thread and Im not from America. Leagal issues are good to be aware of anywere in the world espesially if you are a tourist visiting the US

One good issue raised here is that most accidents occour on relatively easy slopes. Slopes were skiiers that arent that good are pushing their limits and were good skiiers are putting all of their skills at work. On black slopes, moguls and off pist pysical contact is not that usual.
post #39 of 45
Lots of good points being made here ! Here is an event that happened last year that covers a couple areas all touched on. This is a real life event---no "what ifs". I watched it all happen.

I was skiing an Int. run at Breckenridge in very nice bumps and folowing someone about 5-6 turns ahead of me who was probably a level 2 type skier. He was well in control and his skiing could best be described as conservative given the slope and conditions. He would take 5-6 turns in the "Zipper Line" then a round turn (short radius) to check the speed then back to the Zipper.

Skier 2 enters the bump field from the groomed side of the trail in a traverse---skiing faster than the guy in the bumps and cuts across his line. He is out of view of the skier in the bumps until he crosses in front of the bump skier now in the Zipper line.

They clicked skis, thankfully no one fell, and no harm done, but the skier who traversed in--- yelled to the bumper to "ski in control". There are not many skiers who could have changed lines in time to avoid the guy traversing.

Point is---technically the bump guy, according to the code, would have broken rule # 1. He was both up hill and behind the guy traversing, so must avoid him. I don't believe I could have done anythng different and I'm a strong (former Level 3) skier.

I think someone traversing and entering the bump field in that way is doing much the same as one who enters a trail with out looking. Yet technically the bump skier would be the guy responsible for avoiding him.

The code can't cover all events out on the hill---It is a guide---and the better guide is common sense.......To bad everyone out there doesn't have both in their pocket.
post #40 of 45
Thread Starter 
Uncle Louie - good point and good real life story. But the guy traversing also broke rule #4 and in bumps that is a severe crime. In bumps you have to watch out for guys comming from abowe because they cannot alter their course at all sometimes. Standing in the way and blocking mogul zipper tracks is braking rule #1 in bumps. In bumps it is also customary to watch people make their runs and compliment them big time and loudly. Everybody takes part in everybodys dooings. If someone loses his ski there is allways someone there to help.

Also in parks different rules apply. First of all its on your own risk. Look at wave surfing. Normal rules for seagoing vessels do not apply. Usually its the rule of the beach that apply. Good surfers respect the code. Bad surfers get hurt.

One more thing, for sea going vessels following apply: nobody has the right of way but some have the responsibilitie to give way. Its an attitude thing. And it works.
post #41 of 45
tdk6---funny you mention surfing--I was in the water here an hour ago and just read your last post.

So for future ref. here on the Outer Banks (at least from Hatteras north) in North Carolina----First person standing owns the wave. Now we just have to figure out when a Boogie Boarder is "standing" and how to get the rule out to the out of town folks ! So I guess there really is no getting away from this right of way stuff.

Am I way too far off the topic here ------
post #42 of 45
A few random thoughts in response to other random thoughts (a pattern is developing ... and someone's going to conceptually collide with someone here):

Criminal Liability: I don't think there's any case actually still in the courts, though I could be wrong. There have been two big ones. In one, a lift operator was tried and convicted of negligent homicide. I believe he has since served out his sentence. In the other, an English skier was threatened with criminal prosecution, perhaps for manslaughter, but was ultimately released without being charged.

The dangerous places are definitely intermediate (blue) runs. That's where you get the combination of high-speed cruisers and slow, unpredictable intermediates. Ski areas I'm familar with seem to be going to route of designating these as "slow skiing areas" on signs and maps, and staffing them with ski patrolmen, sometimes even with special "speed patrol" vests or coats.

This seems reasonable, though a bit manpower intensive. It's really unfair to expect the intermediates to get out of the way ... where are they supposed to ski otherwise? This reminds me of one day when I was coming down a green (high green? greenish blue?) run and heard a snowboarder yell at a barely-above novice skier: "Get back to the beginner trail!" I came pretty close to telling him, "This is a beginner trail, you #*@&!"

On more challenging runs, it's less of a problem. Very few people "cruise" at great speed down steep faces. In the less steep parts in between faces, everyone skis pretty fast, and there's no real conflict.

To clarify one thing: I made the off-hand comment about helmets being dangerous as a joke. I didn't hit the guy who bawled me out. I said, "on your left," he didn't hear me (apparently), and I passed him with much room to spare, on the left. I didn't even know he didn't hear me until he came by where I was taking off my skis at the end of the run and screamed at me.

They must do things differently in Finland. I've never even heard of the notion that you can fly down a mogul run and expect everyone to stay out of your way (unless you're in some sort of competition, but that's a whole other thing).

I don't really know much about the "developing etiquette" of terrain parks. I have always understood it to be good practice that if you're taking air, you need to have a spotter to make sure the landing is clear. "Clear" doesn't just mean that nobody's lying directly on the landing, but that nobody's poking along about to ski into it.
post #43 of 45
Originally Posted by tdk6
. Usually its the rule of the beach that apply. Good surfers respect the code. Bad surfers get hurt.

Ummmm - how much surfing do you get to do in Finland? :
post #44 of 45
Originally Posted by disski
Ummmm - how much surfing do you get to do in Finland? :
Good question ... as opposed to, say, pony trekking or camping, or just watching TV.
post #45 of 45
Thread Starter 

Uncle Louie - life is unfair....
disski - you have touched a sensetive issue here.... actually, here in Finland you cannot surf but you can windsurf. Wave surfing I have done elsewhere, mostly in Spain and on the Canary Islands.
sjjohnston - Me?? ponytrekking NO... watching TV YES!


sjjohnston - good post. You mention snowboarders.... a pack of cigarett smoking, spitting, funky dressing and cursing bunch of huligans..... Not all of them but certainly some. The problem with snowboarders is that they sit in the pist. Usually a bunch of them together and usually with their lower backs showing and giving a glimps of a j-string and the top parts of a dragon tattoo. When I teach I often have to aske a bunch of them to moove out of the lift exit area were they are prepairing for their run fastening their bindings and smoking joint and blocking everyones way. Up in the exit area they are not realy a danger morely a nusens but in the middle of the hill they are sertainly causing danger for themselves and others. Also, even an experianced snowboarders ability to quickly alter his course is way more limited than a skiiers. I think snowboarding is great and it sertainly has given the whole sport, alpine, a long overdue face lift but at the same time attracted crowds of young boys and girls that are not dooing it because its a "sport", for them its a "rebell" thing. And "rebells" dont particulary care about rules.... The only ones Ive ever disarmed of skipasses have been snowboarders.
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Ski Instruction & Coaching