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Ski area found to be liable for skier's injury - Page 2

post #31 of 80
Quote:
Originally Posted by iskitoofast4u
As adults, we are assumed to be responsible enough to know...
First, I wrote ducking because I was intent on ducking a flame war. However, I have noticed that mods are very vigilent on removing posts that they deem to aggitating for Epic. Huh! Remember the days of Wacko and Bob? Then it was SCSA (aka Wacko) and Bob. Then Paul was asked to leave the building. I digress.

Sure, for the sake of this sober discussion you have an iron clad argument. But in the real world, we've all been there (most have been there.)

You're with friends...
You buy the first round...
Then someone else buys a round...
Then one more for the road.

I know I'm a lightweight. I don't drink regularily. I get high off of three shots of tequila. In a perfect world, I shouldn't ski until I've sobered up.

After I'm sober, if I'm involved in an accident, then any alcohol that I purchased on my resort charge card will be information that the operator will use to distance themselves from liability and draw me closer to it.

Therefore, don't use your resort charge to buy alcohol.

That's all I'm saying.
post #32 of 80
I've skied many times at Hidden and it is not unusual for there to be exposed rocks on some of the trails, ski patrol puts up some bamboo to mark the locations. No big deal.

This could be the last straw for this area. They are chronically under funded and have to compete with Mountain Creek which is just over the hill. Not good.
post #33 of 80
I think the settlement sucks/ And 350,000 dollars is way to much for A broken Jaw and broken teeth!! Thats about 30,000$ tops in medical dental. (Probably has a better smile now than before)

that said, I have noticed a trend at a few resorts of (NEVER) marking exposed rocks on open runs. I would like to see a pole or two go up when rock become exposed in the middle of a run (a little warning) This is a real problem in the Sierra's We have alot of white Granite Bouldlers and rocks under the snow

MTT
post #34 of 80

baloney

There are an awful lot of opinions here with nary a substantive fact in sight.

All we know is .... Kaszycki falls, a rock was involved and he lost some teeth?

The devil is in the details, especially in court and there has not been a substantive detail regarding the circumstances.

There was a case in Pennsylvania that was settled out of court a few years ago. A groomer ran over an eight year old on a "closed trail".

I haven't been to that area in a long time, but from what I remember of the "trails", there was only a thin stand of trees dividing the trails and I suspect that the out of court settlement had something to do with that.

Most hills in this area won't run a groomer while the hill is open for just that reason. Kids and high traffic on a weekend, don't tend to mix with grooming operations. In this case, the "local industry" (areas) set a standard of care (I'm guessing).

In the case above, should the operator be held liable?


Look at these circumstances ... real example ... IF he was hurt (he wasn't), but if:

My son chipped the tip of his new race skis on a race day. When I questioned him, he said he hit a snowmobile. I started to chew him out .... "ski in control, .... racer, .... should know better, ... could have been killed ... yada, yada!

As a 12 year old he clammed up and was speechless. His buddy bailed him out ..... "Mr. ___ , the snowmobile was in the finish area!"

That's right! The idiots parked a snowmobile in the finish area runout!

Had a few words with the Chief of Race and TD ... they moved it pronto!

But .... guess where they parked it next year? Yep! Right back in the runout!

Last season before the start of the race, I remidned the TD that he better check before I got there or there would be a few letters to the USSA and PARA (Pennsylvania Assn.).

If any kid was injured by the (totally) repetitive and dangerous behavior of those ass holes ...... I'd have been clawing to get on the witness stand!
post #35 of 80
Quote:
Originally Posted by Seven
It's interesting to note that in CO, the burden of liability is different for day ticket holders and season pass holders.

Since day ticket holders don't sign a waiver and season pass holders do sign a waiver, CO ski operators can more easily be held liable where a day ticket holder is the plaintiff.
Stupid question, but doesn't CO have a law on the books that basically says what you can (not much) and can't (lots) sue a ski resort over? And if so, what's the point of a waiver at all?
post #36 of 80
Personally, I would rather take responsibility for my protection. In the end, this allows ski resorts to leave the mountain alone and let me decide what is and is not an acceptable risk.

Of course, there will be cases where a resort can be held liable for gross negligence. Never the less, this just opens the door for somebody else (other than me!) deciding how much 'protection' I need. Unfortunately, this could turn into a slippery slope with results that none of us on this forum would like. To avoid this, I tend to lean really heavily toward personal resposibility (fully acknowledging that I am might be letting the resort off the hook). Then I am free to hike, white water raft, ski, mountain bike, etc. with the environment unrestricted and in its natural state. This is one of the things I truly love about skiing.
post #37 of 80
Quote:
Originally Posted by Canyons
CAN YOU BELIEVE THIS?

KASZYCKI v. HIDDEN VALLEY RESORT
Appellate Division, A-6008-03T5, July 19, 2005, not approved for publication. (6 pages). <IMG height=1 width=1 name=Facts18259>Facts-on-Call Order No. 18259 countCases('18259')

Judgment of $350,000 plus prejudgment interest for the plaintiff skier after a jury found the skier 30 percent liable and the defendant skiing facility 70 percent liable for the skier’s injury affirmed; the skier fractured his jawbone and lost eight teeth after one of his skis got caught on an exposed rock on a ski trail; contrary to the facility’s arguments on appeal, a new trial was not warranted.

This is a NJ case. To me, this is not a good thing. When skiing, we should look where we are going, and avoid natural obstructions. Of course, the ski area should frequently patrol and groom its slopes, and warn patrons of known hazards. Could you imagine this verdict in CO., UT, or CA?
And this is the same state trying to ban smoking in vehicls, cause they say it's distracting.. What kind of law makers are in NJ?
post #38 of 80
RANT!!!

Without the details it's hard to tell in this case but in a very broad sense I'm inclined to agree that in this country personal responsibility has gone out the window for most people. Frivolous Civil lawsuits in this country are a BIG problem and LAWYERS/People providing "EXPERT" testimony are the only groups profiting. Make the civil system a LOSER pays system and the number of lawyers taking cases on contingency (fishing) probably drops by more than half. The common sense test rarely gets passed in the cases I've read about and many times the JURY is just as culpable as the plaintiff/lawyer. They see the DEEP pockets of XYZ Corp and think why not give the "Little Guy" something which makes them equally guilty. What are Judges? Ah yes ex-lawyers with "at least early in their careers" debts to be repaid I don't even think we need major tort reform in the civil arena, just to change the prevailing attitude to DO THE RIGHT THING! There are certainly many cases where gross negligence is apparent and the price should be paid, but COMMON SENSE rarely seems to apply in civil "LAW".
Rant Over!!!

Anybody remember the Keystone/Ralston Purina case from the early 80's? We ALL PAID dearly for that
post #39 of 80

I lived in South NJ for awhile

Quote:
Originally Posted by tahoetr
And this is the same state trying to ban smoking in vehicls, cause they say it's distracting.. What kind of law makers are in NJ?
This is a small place with alot of people with very little to do

MTT
post #40 of 80
Quote:
What kind of law makers are in NJ?
The usual kind, corrupt, stupid, egotistical, self-righteous…………..morons.
post #41 of 80

smoking in NJ

It's called a distractor (law). They make lots of laws here and ... they all have "a hook", in this case probably something to do with the insurance industry and/or, its a "Dr. Feelgood law to blow smoke over the fact that they diverted funds from the tobacco settlement fund to "other areas", funds that were earmarked for smoking prevention and cessation.

While you concentrate on single issue silly laws, they are passing ten more that will pull $$$ from your pocket unless your are a member of a 'protected group" of "extra special people".

New law this year in NJ ... if a bus pulls away from the curb and hits you, you are automatically at fault. Period! Total "diplomatic immunity" for bus drivers?

I can't wait to get the hell outa' here.
post #42 of 80
I wonder if the jury was made up of skiers with 20+ years experience. I am willing to be bet most if not the entire jury had no skiing experience.
post #43 of 80

as usual

As usual, I may be wrong but, in NJ all settlements go under judicial review prior to the "big jackpot", being awarded.

My understanding is that in a majority of cases, the award is substantially reduced. Air heads on the jury can be as "benevolent" as they want, but it usually doesn't hold up.
post #44 of 80
1) In the good ole USA, these lawsuits are all too often only about money. The settlements no longer put the person back into the pre accident position but rather in a position of wealth. That is wrong. We are brainwashed into thinking that anytime something unpleasant happens, someone else should pay us money.

2) When you buy your lift ticket, you know that there may be rocks, etc that are a potential hazard. It's hardly a secret. Why then should the resort be held liable?

The vast majority of these liability lawsuits can even be catagorized as unethical. An attorney seeking a vehicle to make money at the expense of others. Doubters? Watch weekday morning TV.
Garyskr
post #45 of 80
So if I was a stupid, irresponsible moron I could get rich. Instead of being a thinking, alert, responsible person. : Sorry for the negative but I just despise this kind of behavior.
post #46 of 80
As has been said, the Devil is in the Details and the jury/judge knows the details better than us, but this brings up an opportunity for me to rant.

What troubles me is that along with the reduction in personal responsibility comes a loss in personal freedom. Pretty soon they just won't open runs if there is a chance a rock or two will show through, if there is a little ice on the moguls, if there are puddles of slush here and there, if it's a little foggy, if it's cold, if it's windy, if it's the day after daylight savings comes off, if the sun isn't bright enough, if it's .......

An example: I for the last five years have been buying a season's pass to my local conservation area. We have about fifteen or so conservation area recreational spots on various lakes and rivers in the region close to my home. For the last five years, my daughter and I have enjoyed swimming at them. Indeed swimming accross the lakes is the main reason I buy my pass. We usually swim up the river to various rocks that we can dive off cliffs to climb and jump off or explore the shoreline, etc. The first year we lived here my 12-year old daughter wanted to swim accross the local man-made lake, so we did (a small lake only about a mile or two accross). We really enjoy going for a swim and not being restricted to the small swimming area. Yesterday we were at one of the areas, and decided to swim accross a small pond (maybe 1/2 a mile) to the other shore. While we were enjoying ourselves quietly approaching a flock of ducks, the authority official felt it necessary to drive around and tell us that we were not allowed to swim in the lake, but only at the beach! It's not a problem with the wildlife being disturbed; you are quite welcome to take your canoe over and disturb the ducks, just not allowed to swim there! I have been swimming accross lakes and rivers for forty years (I sound like my dad ), and now I'm told I'm not allowed to "for my own protection". GIVE ME A BREAK!

I recall back in the 70's looking up a law that gave me the right to access water ways. I wonder if it's still in effect:
post #47 of 80
Recreational Officer-"Sir your daughter needs to have a floation device on and swimming is only allowed in designated areas with a pass. Harrasing the wildlife is a violation of Fedral statue...........As Ghost and daughter are treading water in the middle of the lake.
post #48 of 80
Point well made fellows!

The problem is, there are far too many irresponsible people participating to let people operate on their own personal responsibilities. Those irresponsible people who do 'trip' on hazards are protected by the current state of the tort system in the country. Every operator eventually becomes painfully aware of this.

...If anyone can find a way to protect the truly innocent while sorting out the irresponsible, we need to take a long look at it.

..This problem extends to all facets of American life, not just recreational sports.



~
post #49 of 80
my understanding is that a ski resort are indemnified (to a great degree) due to the fact that skiing is an inherently dangerous sport as is diving. Although a ski binding company or a regulator manufacturer could still be liable for faulty design or product. I don't think that cruise ships share that except for exposing clients to cheesy shows and boredom? However; if a ski resort is grossly neglegent in its operations, they could be found negligent. For instance, if the lift poles running through a green run are not padded and there are no warning signs; or if some one left the hoses from a snow gun on the runs and sent someone flying. Let me know if CO or UT law is different.
post #50 of 80
Quote:
Originally Posted by Finndog
my understanding is that a ski resort are indemnified (to a great degree) due to the fact that skiing is an inherently dangerous sport as is diving. Although a ski binding company or a regulator manufacturer could still be liable for faulty design or product. I don't think that cruise ships share that except for exposing clients to cheesy shows and boredom? However; if a ski resort is grossly neglegent in its operations, they could be found negligent. For instance, if the lift poles running through a green run are not padded and there are no warning signs; or if some one left the hoses from a snow gun on the runs and sent someone flying. Let me know if CO or UT law is different.
There are many schools of thought on your example of padding. One says If one "hazard" is padded, then all "hazards" must be padded. I've seen areas that pad nothing as a result.

Another says pad everything in sight---just in case---including some trees!. Seen that too.

These, by the way, are again---insurer driven policies. Very possibly policies driven by litigation, but still mandated by the insurer---not any governmental body. (At least as far as i know)
post #51 of 80
While we are on the subject how about this??
http://forums.epicski.com/showthread.php?t=28298
post #52 of 80
Quote:
Originally Posted by skier_j
There are many schools of thought on your example of padding. One says If one "hazard" is padded, then all "hazards" must be padded. I've seen areas that pad nothing as a result.

Another says pad everything in sight---just in case---including some trees!. Seen that too.

These, by the way, are again---insurer driven policies. Very possibly policies driven by litigation, but still mandated by the insurer---not any governmental body. (At least as far as i know)
Gotcha; kinda like posted "beware of dog signs", you can be held liable then because you knew your dog was dangerous. damned if you do....
post #53 of 80
Quote:
Originally Posted by iskitoofast4u
.....In other words, Schmidt was 110% right...take 'em out back and off 'em.
...The same goes for the judge...whether it's with a case such as this, or with ignoring the threat of sexual predators... I agree with O'Reilly on this one....we have to get these birds' names and faces up for the lawyers and the rest of the public to see, and to take action to prevent them from making any more decisions...
A little accountability of judges isn't a bad thing....if the accused does a *repeat*, the presiding judge is an automatic accomplice(sp?), and will stand accused as such. That'll bring some realism to a judge's decision....which some now seem to take with a grain of salt for the victim...

Steve is now relaxed again... :
post #54 of 80
Quote:
Originally Posted by feallen
The problem is, there are far too many irresponsible people participating to let people operate on their own personal responsibilities.
Because there are irresponsible people, we must protect them from themselves? No! We must allow them to experience the consequences of their own decisions and actions. Perhaps then they'll learn to think before they do!

Besides, I think that this kind of thing has at least as much to do with a lottery mentality as it does with anything else.
post #55 of 80
Quote:
Originally Posted by ssh
Because there are irresponsible people, we must protect them from themselves? No! We must allow them to experience the consequences of their own decisions and actions. Perhaps then they'll learn to think before they do!
Isn't this where the Darwin Awards come from?
post #56 of 80
You know the type. The guy that has to be re-trained everyday.
post #57 of 80
Quote:
Originally Posted by lennyblake
Isn't this where the Darwin Awards come from?
Yep. And I'm so blasted weary of the irresponsible dictating my activities that I could scream! Just please leave me alone! If I manage to kill or maim myself, it's my own problem, no one else's.
post #58 of 80
I'm a firm beleiver in "if it's natural terrain and you hit it, it's your problem" and "if it's manmade stuff (snowguns, hookups, poles) then it should be clearly marked, and if so and you still hit it, it will be taken on a case-to-case basis. If NOT marked, then the ski area is responsible"

And on that case-to-case basis, if you are skiing out of control or for the conditions of the trail then screw you.
post #59 of 80
Quote:
Originally Posted by SkiRacrNut
I'm a firm beleiver in "if it's natural terrain and you hit it, it's your problem" and "if it's manmade stuff (snowguns, hookups, poles) then it should be clearly marked, and if so and you still hit it, it will be taken on a case-to-case basis. If NOT marked, then the ski area is responsible"

And on that case-to-case basis, if you are skiing out of control or for the conditions of the trail then screw you.
Well said! Simple, clear, and stays out of the way of those of us who just want an opportunity to ride up so we can ski down!
post #60 of 80
Quote:
Originally Posted by skier_j
What if this was at night under artificial lights that went out causing our unfortunate skier to ski without light.

Lights go out around mid run but there was sufficient time to have closed this trail--- it had not been done and our skier got injured when the run should have been closed.
Read the instructions most resorts post regarding night skiing. They instruct you to stop and wait for ski patrol or other assistance if the lights go out.

L
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