Utah boasts that it has “the greatest snow on earth” and people from all over the world travel to Utah to experience fun and excitement in that snow. Skiing tourism dollars are important to the State of Utah and at the behest of the Ski Resort Industry the Utah Legislature passed the Utah Inherent Risks of Skiing Act (put link here) in 1979. This act bars recovery for injuries and damages arising out of the inherent risks of skiing including injuries due to:
• Changing weather conditions
• Changing conditions of snow and ice
• Surface and subsurface conditions including but not limited to rocks, trees, streambeds, cliffs and other natural objects
• Variances in terrain features whether natural or man made
• Impacts with signs, fences, lift towers, hydrants
• Collisions with other skiers or snowboarders
• Training for competitive events
• Skiing beyond a skier’s own ability
While these the Inherent risks law does protect resort owners from liability in most cases, individuals injured while skiing can still recover damages in certain situations where negligent property maintenance is involved; examples are ski lift injuries due to the dangerous and defective condition of the ski lift equipment or where the ski resort negligently rents or provides defective skis, poles boots or other equipment that cause injury. In addition, the Inherent Risks of Skiing Act does not prevent the injured skier from suing other skiers or snowboarders whose negligence or reckless conduct cause collisions and injuries.
Ski Resorts now require signed pre injury liability waivers before guests are allowed to rent ski equipment or purchase lift tickets. These waivers protect the Ski Resort from liability for injuries caused by ordinary negligence and can be effective in barring many potential personal injury claims. However, because of the inherent risk of injury in skiing and snowboarding, what in other situations would be ordinary negligence may rise to the level of gross negligence at a Ski Resort and, according to the Utah Supreme Court, gross negligence cannot be waived as a matter of law.
Attorney David Altman has been honored as one of the Best Attorneys of America and received the NAOPIA TOP TEN (10) award. The National Academy of Personal Injury Attorneys is an organization devoted to recognizing the top Personal Injury lawyers in the nation and less than 1% of the more than 1 million attorneys in the United States have received this prestigious award.
Our law firm handles all aspects of personal injury cases with our no recovery, no fee guarantee. Please contact the Law Offices of David Altman, a top Saint George personal injury law firm dedicated to helping skiing and snowboarding injury accident victims and winning their cases for over thirty five (35) years in Utah and California.
If you have suffered a serious personal injury in St. George, Salt Lake City or anywhere else in Utah and are seeking aggressive, competent and superior legal representation, please call us for a free no obligation, confidential consultation at (435) 688-9999.