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Interesting article on liability in the US.

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
https://coloradosun.com/2021/01/07/avalanche-lawsuit-silverton-school-backcountry-skiing/
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
It's always risky trying to interpret journalist stuff second hand.

It seems like the litigants are annoyed that their man died whilst on an avalanche course, which I suppose one can understand. Then they're annoyed at BCA as well, because their main failed to pull the handle on his bag. I'm not sure that's helpful to anyone unless you have physical evidence of system failure, which isn't described. Often people fail to pull the handle; often they die anyway. Their man is still dead either way.

The guide triggering a slide which buries multiple people on an avalanche course... yeah, that's not good, but it's a risk everyone in that business rakes.
Clearly with hindsight the guide made an error of judgement, but there are many decisions to be made and it's a tough call to make.
I'm not sure how "avalanche courses" work, but I guess they're not risk free, unless you take the course in Hemel Hempstead.
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 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
I’m not sure how the S&R organisation ends up in the frame for the lawsuit.
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 You need to Login to know who's really who.
You need to Login to know who's really who.
ster wrote:
I’m not sure how the S&R organisation ends up in the frame for the lawsuit.


I think the reason is that the article says "The school, which was founded by the San Juan County Sheriff’s Department in the early 1960s and has instructed more than 4,000 students, is an arm of the county’s search and rescue team." Hence the connection.
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
An avalanche course is never going to be risk free, but the risks must be presented honestly. It's always hard to know what is accurate in an article like this, but the bit that stands out to me is:

Quote:
The lawsuit says Silverton Avalanche School staff and instructors agreed not to travel in avalanche terrain that weekend with the Level 2 students.

During those discussions, school staff “expressed concern that defendant Lovell seemed inclined to travel in more complex and bigger terrain despite the fragile snowpack and concerning avalanche conditions,”


If the school has done their risk assessment and deemed the risk too high, then an instructor must respect that. They can't just say they know better then the school and go to avalanche terrain anyway.
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 You'll need to Register first of course.
You'll need to Register first of course.
@Alastair Pink, thanks. Missed that bit.
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 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Standard in the US. Sue everyone, hope they agree to pay something to avoid court costs, plaintiff’s lawyer buys a new Porsche.
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
Quote:

Standard in the US. Sue everyone, hope they agree to pay something to avoid court costs, plaintiff’s lawyer buys a new Porsche.

You clearly have read insufficient John Grisham. They buy a new pricate jet.
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 You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net.
You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net.
Of course there is some risk with any avalanche course and some of the lawsuit is just silly - e.g. trying to sue BCA when supposedly the airbag was in full working order.

However, I think they have a serious case against the guide. There is no way there should have been multiple people skiing a slope that could avalanche, especially in those conditions. Also there should not be a case where a guide can trigger an avalanche onto his client.
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 Ski the Net with snowHeads
Ski the Net with snowHeads
^^^ agree that skiing together sounds dodgy. Don't think you can really say that about triggering the avalanche what with remote triggers. The guide certainly shouldn't be in a position where he is triggering an avalanche from above his clients
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 snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
Even remote triggers you would expect the guide to wait till the clients are on an island of safety before doing anything that could remotely trigger anything. I get there are probably some situations where accidents happen, even with people following the rules to the best of their abilities. This seems like a case of bad guiding though.
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