Skiing is a hazardous winter sport and accidents do happen. If you ski, it is important for you to maintain control and feel comfortable with your surroundings at all times in order to avoid injury. While skiers take up a personal liability when engaging in the sport, there are some accidents where fault lies with others and which might warrant a personal injury claim.
Many states have laws specific to skier safety, especially states where skiing is a popular recreational activity, like Colorado. Since these laws vary so much from state to state, you should contact a personal injury attorney if you have suffered a skiing accident and think that someone else is at fault.
There are several common skiing accidents that could warrant personal injury claims:
- Accidents on Ski Lifts. Ski operators have a duty of care to maintain safely functioning ski lifts. The ski operator may be liable for an injury sustained on a ski lift if their equipment was faulty or not properly maintained.
- Collisions. If you were struck by a skier or snowboarder who was out of control, you may be eligible for a personal injury settlement.
- Property Negligence. Ski operators also have a duty of care to make sure that trails are properly maintained, marked, and lit. Manmade objects, such as snow fences, must be visible to skiers.
- Negligent Workers. Ski instructors might be liable for injuries if they do not consider a skier’s abilities before taking them on more difficult trails.
If you have been injured while skiing and think that someone else is at fault, you should talk to a personal injury attorney as soon as possible. The statute of limitations (how long after an accident you can file a suit) varies from state to state.
A personal injury settlement after a skiing accident could gain you damages similar to other personal injury cases:
- Economic damages, such as medical bills
- Noneconomic damages, such as mental anguish and pain suffered from the injury
- Physical impairment damages to account for permanent injuries, such as limited mobility
When you talk to a personal injury attorney, be prepared with any medical bills you have incurred and with any ski patrol report that might have been filed at the time of your accident. Ski patrols usually investigate accident scenes. Their report will contain information similar to any accident report, including witnesses, an incident description, and the parties involved. If you are unsure how to secure a copy of this report, your personal injury attorney should be able to help you.