Montgomery & Bucks County Workers' Compensation Law Blog

Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Teen Killed in Shawnee Mountain Ski Accident

What are my legal rights if I am injured while skiing or snowboarding?

A 15-year-old girl from Singapore was recently killed while on a school ski trip to Pennsylvania’s Shawnee Mountain Ski Area. The young girl reportedly lost control and skied off the bottom of one of the resort’s trails.  The deceased teen attended Blair Academy in New Jersey, where her peers remember her as a bright and positive person.  This Pennsylvania ski accident is just one accident among a recent rash of ski related accidents to occur thus far this winter.

In early January, a Texas mom and her two young daughters fell off a chairlift at a Colorado ski resort.  The chair carrying the family struck a lift tower before falling 25 feet to the snow below.  The mother did not survive the accident and her two daughters suffered injuries.  Investigations point to a mechanical problem with the ski lift.

Your Legal Rights After a Skiing or Snowboarding Accident

Pennsylvania offers several world renowned ski resorts.  Skiing or snowboarding in the state can be a fun and exciting recreational activity, but it also comes with risks.  Skiers and snowboarders in Pennsylvania and elsewhere across the country have been injured due to:

  • Falls or collisions with objects, such as trees, barriers, or signs;
  • Collisions with other snowboarders or skiers;
  • Chair lift accidents;
  • Accidents due to defective equipment;
  • Accidents due to inadequate instruction;
  • Accidents due to poorly maintained ski sloops or dangerous terrain.

If you have been injured while skiing or snowboarding, your legal rights will depend on the unique circumstances surrounding the accident.  There are several potential defendants in the event of a skiing accident, including another skier, the ski resort, or the equipment manufacturer.  For instance, if you were injured due to dangerous mountain conditions, the ski resort could be liable.  Resort owners are required to maintain their slopes and premises in reasonably safe condition for their intended purpose.  When accidents occur on resort property, which could include skiing accidents, slip and fall accidents, and other incidents, the resort can be held accountable if it acted negligently.  

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