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Question about Liability for Collision - Page 6

post #151 of 158
Originally Posted by CTKook View Post

Uhh, the whole point of waivers is to defend against liability resulting from negligence, as well as in the case of sports in particular to provide notice of the nature of the sport to better-ensure that assumption of risk may also clearly apply as a defense. There's no reason to hope that the level of misinformation in this thread be any better than on the rest of Epic, but something that basic...it speaks for itself. [new paragraph -- the new forum format seems spotty on letting me use paragrpahs].


Can a lawyer please chime in here?  I didn't think a waiver could be used to defend against negligence.  I thought there were certain things you can't sign away.
post #152 of 158
Originally Posted by stevescho View Post


Ski law everywhere else (besides Colorado) is very simple - you ski, you assume all inherent risks, including the negligence of others, so you can't sue.  You don't like it, don't ski, or go to Colorado. 



Again, I am not a lawyer but from reading last night about the rider who tucked Cornice, was racing his friends, was paying attention to himself being ahead of his friends, instead of people he might run into, and was going out of control fast  PAST the end of cornice (at the flat, where people rest), so fast that the woman he hit travelled 50 feet into the air and observers HEARD her bones crack, I know that in california
a) if you are found negligent (and they found him NOT NEGLIGENT even for tucking a %40 run and out of control, even past the run in the flat) not only do you have to pay costs but you also can be found for punishment damages (punitive).
b) if you are not negligent but at fault you can be found to have to pay damages.

(hey mods, is there a way to have the software ignore people you specifize?)
post #153 of 158
Originally Posted by TXtoCO View Post

I stumbled on this thread while trying to figure out remedies for a recent accident I was involved in.


I was in an advanced snowboard class at a popular Colorado resort last week, and I was hit by another boarder (13 year old on a family vacation) in my class who was not advanced, and wiped out at least 3 times each run.  He was told several times by the instructor to control his speed.


I was downhill from him, and did not even know he was behind be until I was hit.  I fell, and knew immediately that something was terribly wrong with my leg, as I could feel my kneecap on the side of my leg, and had never been in so much pain in my life.  The Ski Patrol showed up, did a brief exam, and were finally able to get my leg into a splint for transport down the mountain.  Once at Ski Patrol headwuarters, they were shifting me fromt he sled to a gurney, and my knee cap "popped" back into place.  It still hurt like hell, but was much better that when it was dislocated.


I was then transported to the ER, where X-Rays were taken, and did not show any fractures, and was diagnosed with a lateral patella dislocation with a likely torn retinaculum. I was referred to an orthopedist, and have an appointment tomorrow.  I have done a lo of research in the last few days, and the general conclusion is that surgery will likely be needed, and I will not be able to participate in physical activity for 4-6 months.  I am a recreational triathlete, and am registered for my first Ironman in September of this year.  I think it goes without saying that this accident will negatively affect my quality of life for at least the near future.


The boys father called me, and was very appologetic, which was appreciated.


I had originally said to myself that I would like for the family to take care of any out of pocket medical expenses, and that it was an accident, so there would be no point in a lawsuit.  Then I began to think that if somebody had been driving a car out of control and in a wreckless manner, and injured me like this, you bet your ass I'd sue them.  I keep asking myself what the difference is, and I can't think of any.


I would appreciate any thoughts.

I know nothing about the law.  But from reading about the lasker case, given that the instructor told the student to control his speed 3 different times, not only would you be able to get all your expenses paid but could also get punitives.  But since the kid is a child maybe not.  You are absolutely entitled to have your out of pocket expenses paid for, but I would suggest working it out with the father!!  Maybe his insurance can pay for it?  You wouldnt be suing the person who was out of control, but his parents, who realistically could not of prevented what happened.

Personally, given the gravity of the situation, besides working out payments, I would probably talk to the father and say something like "you know, your son was told multiple times to control his speed, signed up for a class that he was clearly not ready for, and was probably not only responsible for my costs but was also negligent and could be held responsible for punitive damages, BUT I assure you I will not try to try him for negligence (in civil court).  BUT, I think you should have him do some community service plus restrict him from snowboarding for a year.

Before you do that I would try to get some legal advice about having your medical costs paid for by the family without taking it to court.  Once you are cleared to talk to the father make sure he understands that you are not trying to get punitaves, you are sorry he has to go through this, but his sons negligence caused you a ton of money.
post #154 of 158
I strongly diasgree!!  Skiing being a hazardous sport does NOT mean you should expect the possibility of people going out of control and maiming you!  It means you can fall and break your leg.  Or fall going two miles per hour, hit your head, and die.  Saying that one should expect to be hit like a Nascar driver gets hit is ridiculous!!!
I am not saying he should sue the resort, or try to get punitives from the parents, but yes he should try to have his out of pocket medical expenses paid.  A friend had to declare bankruptcy from a car accident, was $30,000 and insurance paid $4,000. 

I think he should be mindfull of the stress it will put on the family and try to make things as easy as possible in this tough time for both him and them.  Try not to get lawyers involved.  Try to get insurance to cover it.  Plus many other things that you will be able to think up. 

Originally Posted by shazam! View Post



This situation is not analogous to just being out for a sunday drive and having someone hit you... this is more like signing up for a track day and having some else hit you... you have already signed up for a high risk activity... recklessness is, in this case, a legal term, and the other boarder may (probably) not have risen to that standard.


It will cost a bunch ($$$) to start this lawsuit


The discussion we have been going over for the last few pages was about whether it was "possible" to win a suit against another boarder/skier.  This is quite different from the question of whether you are likely to win.  There is a good chance you will not, no matter if you are in Colorado or not.


From the sounds of things, you will not be out of work.  This would mean that there are no pecuniary damages.  With medical costs already taken care of, no loss of income and no "permanent disability" you are facing an uphill climb on damages.


You do not yet know the prognosis, so don't put the cart before the horse, in any case.


Injuries happen.  Accidents happen.  Do your physio.  Get well.  Get back on the board next season.

post #155 of 158
Originally Posted by Dean View Post

Originally Posted by masonfl View Post
I'm new to the forum so I am, of course, happy to recieve feedback if I'm breaking any protocols. However, this topic is very important and timely for me.

My father is a lifelong skiier. He 79 and still skiies every week. I believe he started when he was about 10 and he's very accomplished.

Yesterday morning he was skiing with his class (yes, still takes lessons!). The ski area was very empty...very few skiiers on the slope. As he was nearing the bottom with his class he was hit from behind by another skiier. The collision was very hard...enough to rip the binidings off at least one of my dad's skies. He apparently flew through the air and landed in a heap. His arm was broken in two places...seriously enough that he will need to have surgery next week to put in a plate/pin. He also has a minor fracture in his left ankle, major contusions on his left and a black eye.

Needless to say I'm concerned about his health. But I'm also furious at the person who caused the accident. Apparently the other skiier was injured as well. He's old enough to know better...perhaps late 40's or early 50's.

My question is this. I'm not what I'd call a litigous person but I'm seriously thinking about what options we/my father might have to sue the idiot that hit him. The money is a relatively small part of it. At a minimum the guy should cover my father's out of pocket health costs and equipment damage. But more than that I want to make an example out of the guy. Sure, accidents happen and we all take some risk when we go skiing. But hitting someone from behind is inexcusable. Doing so on an empty slope at high speed even more so. I want to make an example out of this guy to provide an incentive for other skiiers to avoid making similar careless and stupid mistakes.

I'm wondering if people on this forum have any information/experience in this type of thing. I don't want to take this guy's house from him. I don't want to ruin his life. But I do want it to hurt. I want it to be enough to be in the news so that other skiiers hear about it and think twice before being idiots.

I should add that I'm also a lifelong skiier...starting at the age of 5. For a few years I skiied full-time. So this isn't coming from someone who doesn't recognize the risks of skiing. But hitting anyone - particularly a 79 year old man who's skiing carefully in and in control - deserves some punishment.

One of the things about ski clothes. We can't tell how old the wearer is from behind.
We all try to avoid collisions. I have a great deal of difficulty believing that someone in their 40s to 50s would deliberately line up another skier on the slope, then try to take him out. From what I am reading, this is an accident, pure and simple. You have not mentioned what the conditions were, what the proficiency level of the other skier was, what the other skier was doing, or if your father was doing something that may have made his course more difficult to predict for the uphill skier. Before you go running off to court you better have firm answers to all of these questions.
In addition, what did the other person do after the collision? Did he render assistance, call the ski patrol, apologize, ski away, or stand there and laugh?
Personally, from the little information you have presented, and because I think that it was an accident, I believe that suing the other skier would be a knee jerk reaction to seeing your father with a severe injury. If your father has been skiing for as long as you said, then he knows as well as you do that skiing is a sport with inherent risks, and that it is very easy to be injured while skiing. In addition, what would happen to you if you hit someone else by accident? Should they sue you? And don't tell me that that will never happen, it can happen very easily. Hell, I am also a pretty good skier, and I skied over my instructor's skis (yes, I also take lessons) during my last course... last night! It can happen to all of us, it will happen to many of us, and if it does happen, the last thing we need is a lawyer's letter after it does happen.
So calm down and look at it objectively. From what you know, if the other skier had hit me rather than your father, would you still be asking the same question?


Accident pure and simple? accidents usually involve carelessness read: negligence. Made his course difficult to predict? Do you have a working grasp of the skiers code? This is really sad to hear from a patroller.
   I would sue him seven ways to Sunday, not he resort the individual. If you hit someone that hard you are a menace. If I ever hit someone like that,I'll deserve it too.
post #156 of 158
Originally Posted by TheGnar View Post

Originally Posted by masonfl View Post
...he pratcially killed my father...

Is it wrong that I laughed at this?

By the way...is this all you going after this? What does your father think? Not once have you said you're acting on behalf of him. If he doesn't care to persue this than why are you so gung-ho about it? Just curious.

And since you're the one who sounds like a total idiot, I think i'll go out tomorrow to A-Basin and ski my ass off just in spite. Besides...skiing like an idiot is the only way to ski. I guess you ski like a pansy?

I sincerely hope your father is well and has many more years of skiing left.
This may be in fact THE most retarted post I have ever read on any forum ever. Nothing the OP has stated reflects any of these assertions. He does not sound stupid or whiny or greedy. At the risk of being a troll i am compelled to say that you are an IDIOT!
   Since you see fit to post in the patrol forum let me educate you on a little thing we call MOI mechanism of injury. be ripped out of your bindings and having long bone fractures definitely smack of the type of trauma that can and has caused death. Maybe you should move to the shallow end of the pool, like newschoolers?
post #157 of 158
Originally Posted by pdxammo View Post

Accident pure and simple? accidents usually involve carelessness read: negligence. Made his course difficult to predict? Do you have a working grasp of the skiers code? This is really sad to hear from a patroller.
   I would sue him seven ways to Sunday, not he resort the individual. If you hit someone that hard you are a menace. If I ever hit someone like that,I'll deserve it too.

To an extent I agree.  The person was not in absolute control, and he caused another person serious injury and serious medical costs, so he should morally take responsibility.

Was he reckless enough that he should be charged criminally? (I know you didnt advocate this) Not enough facts to say.

When you ski, you can fall down all on your own and break a bone or even die (natasha ???, in Canada, fell going at low speed on a beginner, died from head trauma).  Thus the warning that skiing is a inherently dangerous sport.  For what you can easily do to yourself, not because some reckless person might kill you.

In the original posters incident, the hitter may be criminally negligent, may be legally required to pay punitave damages, the facts dont say this tho, but from what has been said I would lean towards saying the person is legally required to pay costs
post #158 of 158
Originally Posted by CTKook View Post

Originally Posted by Cirquerider View Post
I don't think we said we favor a negligence standard, but acknowledge one certainly exists in most places...
That is not a correct statement of law, but again not surprising. Curious, do you want it applied to determine liability for injuries suffered while doing drills at ESAs? Good for the goose, good for the gander. You and I may have different opinions as to the merits of some drills, let's let a jury decide.

Bad form frankly to bring up the Jackson case. You may not have heard the phrase "Jackson fast," but rest assured there's a strong tradition of fast skiing and riding there. There's a very clear difference between negligence and grossly reckless behavior, you may not appreciate that but thank God currently for it.
The Jackson case was clearly a case of the snowboarder being negligent.  It wasn't even close to being something that I would just "let go".  It was a while ago and I don't remember every specific detail of that accident.  I am friends with the DA here and have discussed this case and a few other collision cases that resulted in death with him.  In the case you mentioned the family of the woman that was killed was much more forgiving than I would have been.  I thought they showed some real class in not crucifying him.  
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