South-Western Legal Studies in Business

Skier Assumes Risk of Hitting Snowboard Equipment
Description Michigan high court dismissed a suit brought by a skier who was injured when he ran into a snowboard rail. Under a state statute, skiers assume the risk of injury from the sport. That is true whether it be snowboarding or skiing equipment that is provided for use of sports participants.
Topic Torts
Key Words Negligence; Failure to Warn; Assumption of Risk
C A S E   S U M M A R Y
Facts Barrett was injured when he struck a snowboard rail while he was skiing at a ski resort. He sued the resort for negligence for failure to warn of the presence of the snowboard rail. The resort owner moved to have the suit dismissed but the trial court and court of appeals refused that motion. Resort owner appealed.
Decision

Reversed and remanded. The Ski Area Safety Act states that each person who participates in the sport of skiing accepts the dangers that inhere in that sport insofar as the dangers are obvious and necessary. It does not matter if a person is skiing or snowboarding, the law applies the same. A risk of skiing is the existence of snowboard equipment, which is obvious in its placement. The suit should be dismissed in favor of defendant.

Citation Barrett v. Mt. Brighton, Inc. ---N.W.2d--- (2006 WL 827866, Sup. Ct., Mich., 2006)

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