March 1, 2012

In Portland, you sometimes overhear people debating the wisdom of cars and bicycles sharing the road. Portland is one of the most bicycle-friendly cities in the country and boasts miles of bike paths into and around the city. StillStill, there is always a chance that a bike and a car will collide, and it is hard to imagine that the bike and biker won’t suffer more damage than the car.

When it comes to ski slopes, there’s a similar debate brewing: Should snowboarders share the ski runs with skiers? A 54-year-old woman who suffered a brain injury in a recent ski accident likely has her own ideas on the subject.

The woman was skiing down an Olympic run at a resort on Feb. 22 when a resort employee on a snowboard crashed into her. In a complaint filed in U.S. District Court, the woman says the employee was snowboarding in an unsafe, out-of-control manner; she also claims the resort is liable for its employee’s actions.

This is not the first such claim against the resort. Another woman, injured when an employee on a snowboard crashed into her in January 2011, filed suit late last year.

What makes the cases a little tricky is that the employees are not U.S. citizens. According to the complaint in this suit, the resort does not have liability insurance to cover its foreign employees. The complaint continues that the resort has told the victim that this is a skier-to-skier accident only; if the plaintiff wants to have medical and disability costs paid, she should pursue an action against the employee as an individual.

We’ll continue this in our next post.

Source:, “Second injured skier sues Heavenly parent company,” Martha Bellisle, March 4, 2012


Categories: Blog