Ski accidents have traditionally been governed by what is called the inherent danger rule which means that one who partakes in such accepts the dangers that inhere in it. That rule, to some extent, has been supplanted in many jurisdictions according to injury attorney Brien Roche. For instance, the existence of a shrub on a ski slope may create potential liability for the operator on the theory that the shrub should have been removed. If however the shrub was readily visible from a considerable distance, then the ski operator may have a viable defense reports injury attorney Brien Roche.
Many states have adopted ski safety legislation to in part insulate the ski industry from liability claims.
Some courts have applied the highest standard of care on ski lift operators on the theory that they, in effect, are common carriers.
Collision cases involving collisions between two different skiers generally are governed by the presumption that the uphill skier will exercise reasonable care and yield the right of way to the downhill skier.
As part of any ski injury case, it typically is assumed that the skier has the requisite skills to ride the lift safely, to load and unload safely, to observe and follow all signs and to be able to navigate down the hill that has been chosen.
If you live in the Fairfax, Virginia or D.C. area and have been injured as a result of a ski accident, contact us.
See skiing for Virginia case law on this subject.