Skiing accidents – what are your legal rights and options?

Ski slope

This time of year sees snow at home or abroad and skiers venturing to the slopes, whether in Scotland or further afield. Like other types of holidays, the vast majority of ski trips are memorable for all the right reasons.

It is important though for skiers to be aware of what they should expect in terms of safety measures when visiting a ski slope and what their legal rights and options are in case something does go wrong.

Anyone using the facilities at a ski centre should expect them to work safely and properly at all times.  This includes ski slopes, lifts and any equipment or protective clothing which is provided. Staff and instructors should be appropriately trained and specific measures should be in place to ensure skiers of all ages and abilities can enjoy the slopes safely.

Ski slope with ski lifts

If something does go wrong, skiers can be entitled to claim compensation for any injuries they suffer as a result of any failure or negligence on behalf of the organisation running the ski slope or centre.

The types of injuries that are caused by accidents on the slope can range from broken bones to more serious injuries such as spinal or brain injuries.

The most common types of ski accident that cause injuries, and skiers and snowboarders should be aware of, include:

  • Colliding with other skiers or snowboarders
  • Crashing into trees, signs, fences etc.
  • Chair lift accidents
  • Poor directions from an instructor
  • Ski equipment failure
  • Terrain and snow conditions

Recently, Austrian officials were reporting 330 skiing accidents every day that resulted in hospital treatment due to a shortage in snow on the slopes over the festive period. The problem was made worse by the use of snow cannons, which produce snow that hardens more quickly than natural snow, increasing the risk of injury.

Digby Brown have represented individuals who have been injured at Ski Centres in Scotland and abroad, achieving significant compensation settlements for those affected.  For ski accidents resulting in particularly serious injuries, Digby Brown has a specialist department with over 40 years’ experience in dealing with every aspect of spinal cord and brain injury claims.

If you have been injured on a ski slope as the result of negligence and would like to speak with someone, please call us on 0333 200 5925 or fill in our short enquiry form and we will be in touch.