Dry Ski Slope Accident Compensation For Injury Due To Defectively Secured Surface
Dry ski slope accident due to defective surface: solicitor explains in a Q & A when you can claim compensation for personal injury on a dry ski slope in the UK.
Dry Ski Slope Accident Victim Question
I was skiing in the North of England on a dry ski slope with my brother who was snowboarding. I skied over part of the slope that was not fixed down correctly allowing it to lift and stick up. I caught this at speed, was thrown in the air and broke my left arm & dislocated my shoulder on impact. My brother also fell heavily from his snowboard, but luckily he did not suffer any injury.
I took photos of the loose slope which showed no fixings in place. I was offered no first aid, no ambulance and simply told to take myself to hospital.
The dry ski slope centre subsequently investigated the accident, accepting that there was a problem with the fixings.
They have offered me a refund of my entrance fee and a contribution to my lost income when this is known (I am a plasterer and currently unable to work).
I feel this is not compensating me for my injuries or the stress and upset this has placed on me and my family and our day to day lives.
What can I claim in compensation and how do I go about getting the correct amount?
Personal Injury Solicitor Response
When making a claim for compensation there are two parts of the claim that need to be proven:
1. Proving that the ski centre was legally at fault for the accident
You have already commented that liability has been accepted. I suspect this is not formally accepted (it could be accepted without prejudice) – but still it is a good starting point.
In any event – you have good evidence to support that a defective surface existed and it is clearly foreseeable that such defect could cause injury in the ordinary use of the dry ski slope.
When your claim is commenced with a solicitor the ski centre and their insurers are given the opportunity to formally accept liability, which would seem likely here.
Don’t worry – if liability is not accepted, your solicitor will prove liability on your behalf. If still not accepted – your claim would be issued at court for a trial before a judge to determine the issue of liability
2. Determining quantum – what you can claim for and how much compensation you can claim
The two types of loss you can claim dry ski slope accident are general damages (pain, suffering and loss of amenity) and special damages (financial loss and expense).
A) Ski Accident Claim General Damages – Pain and suffering and loss of amenity
The general damages are dealt with by an independent medical expert report. As your injuries are a broken / fractured arm and dislocated shoulder – the likely expert would be an orthopaedic surgeon. Your solicitor will instruct this medical expert to comment on the balance of probability and with a duty to the court.
Remember – Keep a diary of your symptoms on a day to day basis. All primary and secondary symptoms – both physical and psychological. This will help you get the most accurate medical report.
The medical report – will include a prognosis setting out how long your injuries will take to fully recover, whether there will be any ongoing disability, whether there will be any future risks such as arthritis or future risk of dislocation and how long it is likely you will be unable to work as a plasterer.
Based upon the medical report – your solicitor can look at judicial guidance and case law to find decisions made by the courts for similar injuries and so value the pain and suffering element of your claim.
Although – the medical expert should comment on your ability to work, the lost income part of your dry ski slope accident claim is usually classed as a special damage.
B) Special Damages – Financial loss and expense
Financial loss and expense will vary from person to person. you have already indicated that you are unable to work and so are incurring lost income. Lost income can be in three parts – past lost income (from the date of the accident to the date of the settlement of your claim), future lost income (any predicted further lost income likely to be incurred following settlement of your claim) and disadvantage on the open labour market (even if you have returned to work this head of loss takes into account the risk that should you lose your job in the future that you might not be quite as able to find another job due to injuries).
Other special damages, include – medical expenses, travel to the hospital / GP, care and assistance in the home (friends, family and partners providing help in the home following injury). There are many other types of loss that might be specific to you so this would need to be discussed thoroughly with your solicitor.
It would help your dry ski slope ski accident claim if you keep a diary of expenses with receipts.
Making a Dry Ski Slope Accident Claim
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