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Standard of care in ski collisions moss

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This presentation looks at the different standards of care applied to collisions between people on a ski slope. Some states apply a negligence standard, some a reckless standard and some say the participants assume the risk of their injury in the sport.

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Standard of care in ski collisions moss

  1. 1. Why is the Standard of Care lower in Skiing than in other Sports?
  2. 2. Sport and Recreation Law Association Annual conference 2016
  3. 3. Merry Moiseichik, R.Ed, J.D University of Arkansas Jim Moss, Esq Recreation Law
  4. 4. Survey • How many people in the room think you can sue if you are knocked down by someone ice skating? • How many people in the room think you can be sued if you lose control roller blading and knock someone down? • How many people in the room believe that if they are knocked down by someone skiing they can sue the person who knocked them down?
  5. 5. Why is the Standard of Care lower in Skiing than in other Sports?
  6. 6. Why are there different Standards of Care There are at least three different standards of care applied to collisions between people on a ski slope
  7. 7. All other Sports You assume the risk of contact – Whether Professional or Amateur • Ice Skating • Baseball • Football • Soccer
  8. 8. Yet in Skiing In some states you can be sued for being negligent and in other states you assume the risk of the collision
  9. 9. Dillworth v. Gambardella, 970 F.2d 1113; 1992 U.S. App. LEXIS 17333i • Collison occurred at bottom of run • Upon observing a skier to his left coming towards him out of control and at a fast rate of speed, he attempted to turn out of the approaching skier's way. • No recovery collision was an inherent danger of the sport Vermont
  10. 10. Fernandez v. Beaton, 2009 Cal. App. Unpub. LEXIS 4481 • On February 18, 2006, Beaton collided with Fernandez in Heavenly's "Snow Beach" area and injured her knee. • Plaintiff assumed the risk of the collision California
  11. 11. States that have a Ski Area As of October 21, 2014 States with Skiing are Yellow
  12. 12. States with State Skier Safety Acts As of October 21, 2014 States with Skier Statutes are Green
  13. 13. Standard of Care in Skier v. Skier Collisions Inherent Risk of Skiing is defined by Statute States were collisions are defined by statute are in red
  14. 14. Standard of Care in Skier v. Skier Collisions Collision is an Inherent Risk defined by Case Law States were case law defines a collision as an inherent risk of skiing are blue
  15. 15. Standard of Care in Skier v. Skier Collisions Recklessness to prove a claim for a collision States were the standard of care is Recklessness are Burnt Orange
  16. 16. Inherent Risk According to Statute …. collision with other skiers; and the failure of skiers to ski within their own abilities Alaska Ski Safety Act of 1994, Alaska Stat. §§ 05.45.010 et seq.
  17. 17. New Hampshire (h) collisions with other skiers; (i) the failure of a skier to ski within that skier’s ability;
  18. 18. Inherent Risk of Skiing by Case Law Collision with another skier is a risk inherent in skiing. Primary assumption of the risk precludes liability for collisions between skiers who know and appreciate the well-known and inherent risk of such collisions. The district court lawfully concluded that summary judgment in favor of respondent was warranted, having found as a matter of law that appellant assumed the risk of the skiing collision. Peterson, v. Donahue, 733 N.W.2d 790; 2007 Minn. App. LEXIS 91
  19. 19. California Unless the defendants“"[C]onduct is totally outside the range of ordinary activity involved in the sport (and thus any risks resulting from that conduct are not inherent to the sport) if the prohibition of that conduct would neither deter vigorous participation in the sport nor otherwise fundamentally alter the nature of the sport. We conclude that defendant owed a duty of care not to increase the risks of skiing beyond those inherent to the sport. Campbell v. Derylo, 75 Cal. App. 4th 823; 89 Cal. Rptr. 2d 519; 1999 Cal. App. LEXIS 915; 99 Cal. Daily Op. Service 8401; 99 Daily Journal DAR 10709
  20. 20. …a skier owes a duty to fellow skiers not to injure them intentionally or to act recklessly, but a skier may not sue another for simple negligence Cheong v. Antablin, 16 Cal. 4th 1063; 946 P.2d 817; 68 Cal. Rptr. 2d 859; 1997 Cal. LEXIS 7662; 97 Cal. Daily Op. Service 8851; 97 Daily Journal DAR 14317
  21. 21. Conneticut We conclude that in the case the appropriate level of care demanded of coparticipants in the sport of skiing is that of reasonableness. Jagger v. Mohawk Mountain Ski Area, Inc., et al. 269 Conn. 672; 849 A.2d 813; 2004 Conn. LEXIS 237
  22. 22. Illinois Because downhill skiers do not voluntarily submit to physical contact with other skiers when they proceed onto the slopes, skiers were found by the Novak court to owe one another a duty of ordinary care. Novak, 224 Ill. App. 3d at 321
  23. 23. Minnesota Collision with another skier is a risk inherent in skiing. Primary assumption of the risk precludes liability for collisions between skiers who know and appreciate the well-known and inherent risk of such collisions. The district court lawfully concluded that summary judgment in favor of respondent was warranted, having found as a matter of law that appellant assumed the risk of the skiing collision. Peterson, v. Donahue, 733 N.W.2d 790; 2007 Minn. App. LEXIS 91
  24. 24. Collision on a Ski Slope Standard of Care • It is an assumed risk of skiing – By statute • But only protects the ski area – By case law • It requires recklessness on the part of the defendant – by case law • It Requires Negligence on the part of the defendant – by case law
  25. 25. Survey • How many people in the room think you can sue if you are knocked down by someone ice skating? • How many people in the room think you can be sued if you lose control roller blading and knock someone down? • How many people in the room believe that if they are knocked down by someone skiing they can sue the person who knocked them down?
  26. 26. THANK YOU

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