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Weightlifter Assumed the Risk When Attempting to Lift Heavy Weight
Description Court dismissed a suit filed by a weightlifter who was injured in a competition when he slipped and 565 pounds fell on his chest, injuring him. The fact that the spotters were unable to prevent the weight from falling did not mean that the competition organizers were negligent; the injury was a part of the risk assumed in such competition.
Topic Torts
Key Words Assumption of the Risk
C A S E   S U M M A R Y
Facts Lee was injured while participating in a weightlifting competition. As he began to bench press 565 pounds, he slipped and the weight came down on his chest, injuring him, before the spotters could grab the bar. He sued the organizers of the competition, contending that the spotters were not adequately trained to prevent such injuries. The defendant moved for summary judgment, contending that Lee assumed the risk inherent in such competitions.
Decision Motion to dismiss granted. Lee assumed certain risks inherent in weightlifting competition. One risk is that spotters may not be able to prevent weights from falling in such instances. The spotters acted in conformance with the rules of weightlifting competition; the fact that they did not have formal training did not unreasonably increase the risks to the weightlifters. Nothing that the competition organizers or monitors did was improper or increased the risk to the participants.
Citation Lee v. Maloney, 692 N.Y.S.2d 590 (Sup. Ct., N.Y., 1999)

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