Denver, Colorado 2021-09-08 19:50:37 –
Parents of a 6-year-old girl who died while riding at Glenwood Cave Amusement Park said she would have a hard time holding the park accountable for her death if the park signed an exemption on her behalf. Legal experts say.
According to Colorado law, parks and their employees cannot act recklessly, but according to the University of Denver, those who sign the exemption agree to “make the company negligent.” Law University Professor Tom Russell..
And in Colorado, “parents can waive responsibility for their children,” Russell said, saying that other states like New Jersey haven’t allowed it. “It is not moral for Colorado to make this possible. It ignores children.”
Russell said his parents might sign a waiver, believing it wasn’t really enforceable. They are wrong.
“If properly drafted, waivers tend to be enforceable,” Russell said. “If the exemption includes a negligence clause, it is an exemption for the inherent risks of the activity and the negligence of the business. There is a problem.”
Thousands of people ride amusement park attractions each year, from the largest resorts to the smallest mobile amusement parks. Virtually everyone will be exempt from liability for signing or passively accepting by purchasing a ticket.
Colorado law governing allegations of tort Russell also said he would limit non-economic damages to about $ 571,000.
To recover more, you need to show that your business is deliberately reckless, such as knowing that your seatbelts have been removed or deferring important maintenance for a busy day. .. Otherwise, a disclaimer will apply and indemnify your business.
“If you choose a state to get injured, Colorado is a bad state,” he said.
A copy of Glenwood Cave’s disclaimer Whatever you get from that website, anyone who wants to use any of the 15 different attractions, including Minedrop, clearly acknowledges that it is dangerous and “at risk of physical injury or death.” It shows that it is.
More importantly, the waiver waives all legal claims against Glenwood Cave, including “all liability for all injuries, including death” and “actual or alleged negligence”. It states that.
Shanin Specter, a professor of law at the University of California Hastings College and a lawyer in Pennsylvania and a legal liability expert, said the enforceability of the exemption is “a state-by-state unresolved and developing legal discipline.” However, he said that there was a specific problem. Riding in an amusement park where children die.
“If a 6-year-old child can dive 100 feet and die because the vehicle is improperly designed, maintained, or manipulated, there is at least a problem of superficial recklessness,” Specter said. Says. “Whether Colorado law allows claims … A 6-year-old child cannot be held responsible for his or her safety in amusement park rides.”
But Russell said it was difficult to prove reckless behavior.
“It’s important to know what negligence means. It’s acting unfairly,” Russell said. “A release that positively abandons negligent injuries simply allows businesses to run unfairly without consequences. Few Colorado judges say this action was reckless. Probably. “
Wongel Estifanos Died on Sunday while riding the Haunted Mine Drop in the park Ride, vertical free fall that plunges down the tunnel in about 2.5 seconds. Investigation into her death is ongoing. The Garfield County Coroner’s Office on Tuesday said she had died from multiple blunt injuries.
Details of the accident have not been released, but according to a copy of the tape released by law enforcement on Tuesday, the 911 operator said the girl had fallen 110 feet.
The ride was intentionally designed without a shoulder harness, The flagship safety feature of most other vertical drop rides around the world. According to state records, the vehicle has consistently passed safety inspections since its opening in 2017.
The park’s disclaimer acknowledges that seat belts “never guarantee safety” and that riders can still be injured by “force beyond the limits of protection provided by seat belts”. increase.
“If the belt is loose and they don’t know it, it’s not a claim to win,” Russell said. “Even if someone helps with the ride, or if you inadvertently act unfairly on a busy day, that’s not what they can claim.”
The state’s support for business comes from years of lawsuits in which ski resorts have been sued for the actions of skiers who have ventured off the slopes. Suddenly, like an amusement park ride, patrons expanded to chairlifts under the control of the resort.
According to Russell, lawmakers have changed the law several times, making it difficult to hold defective businesses accountable and limiting the amount of damages that can be assessed.
“There was an argument that we couldn’t run a business without all the exemptions,” he said. “I argue that a business lacks social utility and shouldn’t exist unless it really really runs, unless it imposes the cost of negligent injuries on its customers.”
Specter said many of the Glenwood cases are likely to depend on what happened.
“I don’t know what will happen in the Glenwood Cave incident, but it’s very fact-sensitive,” he said. “But in my experience as a practitioner and professor of law, there are usually remedies for mistakes.”
Amusement park riders have limited rights in Colorado if they’re injured or killed Source link Amusement park riders have limited rights in Colorado if they’re injured or killed