The Connecticut Appellate Court has ruled that a ski area in New Hartford isn’t liable for an accident in 2006 that paralyzed a 15-year-old boy. The Appellate Court on Monday upheld a jury verdict in favor of Ski Sundown Inc. in a lawsuit brought by James Malaguit. Malaguit suffered spinal injuries after skiing off a jump at the ski area. He is now a quadriplegic. Malaguit accused the ski area in his lawsuit of negligently building and maintaining a snow jump.
The U.S. Forest Service has essentially found Vail had no responsibility for the terrible tragedy that cost one teen his life. White River National Forest Supervisor Scott Fitzwilliams said his agency won’t require Vail Resorts to revamp its snow safety procedures in the wake of a large inbounds avalanche on Prima Cornice that killed 13-year-old Taft Conlin last winter.
Many skiers hit the slopes without much thought to whether they signed a waiver releasing ski area operators from responsibility for negligence. But when that skier is injured because the ski area violates specific provisions of the Ski Safety Act does the statute govern are does the waiver trump the statutory duties?
After a season filled with tragedies and accidents, it is refreshing to write about a promising new development. Mesa Verde National Park has won a grant from the National Park Foundation. The Foundation is granting the park $9,765 through its Active Trails program. The money will go to help create snowshoe and ski trails to some of its more remote ruins, so people can better enjoy the park in the winter. Winter recreation in the park will help attract tourists, spur economic development in southwest Colorado and inject revenue into local economies during the park’s slower months. And it will provide skiers an extraordinary winter experience!