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Skiing and Snowboarding Accidents: What You Need to Know

Skiing and Snowboarding Accidents: What You Need to Know

Posted By The Dunnion Law Firm || 5-Jan-2017

Winter time is upon us, and with winter comes all the fun of ski lodges—warm fires in the lodge, great fine dining with your beloved, and, of course, the excitement of hitting the slopes on skis and snowboards. Unfortunately, along with these activities come a lot of injuries that occur on the slopes, and there are legal issues that go along with them.

Not every injury on the slopes entitles you to compensation, but some certainly do. Learn everything you need to know about skiing and snowboarding accidents, how you can collect damages, and why you need a personal injury lawyer.

Injuries on the Slopes

There are so many different kinds of injuries that happen on ski slopes, one could write a medical journal just on them. From skinned elbows to bone fractures, to shattered knees, to serious spinal and traumatic brain injuries and more. Of course, the most serious of these can be debilitating and deadly. As these two sports enjoy a rise in popularity, so do the injuries associated with them.

For the most part, these injuries arise from four types of incidents:

- Falls or collisions with other people on the slopes, or with inanimate objects like fences, trees, barriers, etc.

- Accidents involving chair lifts

- Incidents resulting from poor instruction

- Incidents related to personal equipment failure (bad skis, poles, snowboards, etc.)

Skiing and Snowboarding Injuries and Negligence

When someone seeks compensation for a personal injury, they have to demonstrate that negligence was involved on someone’s part, and that negligence was the cause of (or greatly contributed to) the accident. When it comes to skiing injuries, there are several different ways this could happen:

1. Another skier or snowboarder was behaving recklessly and caused your collision

2. The slope you were skiing had inadequate signage or warnings

3. Your instructor allowed you to ski terrain beyond your level

4. The equipment at the slope (ski chairs, for example) was poorly maintained

5. Your personal equipment had a manufacturer’s fault that caused it to fail

Each of these above situations yields varying levels of responsibility to varying individuals. In the first situation, the other skier was negligent. In the second and fourth, the resort was potentially negligent. In the third, the instructor (and potentially the resort) holds some blame. Finally, in the fifth, the manufacturer could be liable under product liability statutes.

Assumption of Risk

It’s also important to understand that when you engage in a dangerous physical activity like skiing or snowboarding, you assume a certain amount of risk under the law. This means that you are not entitled to compensation if you are injured in an activity that could be considered within the normal scope of the sport.

Personal Injury Lawyer

Because injuries from snowboarding and skiing can be so complicated, and there are so many different scenarios that can determine responsibility, it’s important, if you’ve been hurt and it’s not your fault, to get in touch with a qualified personal injury lawyer.

An attorney can sit down and discuss the details of your case, with no cost and no obligation, and let you know where you stand. When it comes to getting the maximum compensation allowable under the law, an attorney is your best bet. They can fight insurance companies and non-payment tactics and protect your rights. If you’re in this situation and need help, call Dunnion Law today.