Did Speeding Skier Cause This Woman’s Death?

A fatal collision between two skiers in 2013 has resulted in a civil lawsuit against the surviving skier, accusing her of traveling at an unsafe speed.

The Aspen Times reports that two women were skiing on Aspen Mountain in February 2013 at the time of the accident. A 48-year-old Pennsylvania woman stopped on the ski run to wait for her boyfriend when another skier slammed into her.

Witnesses reported that the defendant was skiing at a “high rate of speed,” and was “out of control” when the two collided, throwing the victim 10 to 15 feet from her original position. Fellow skiers described the woman as “unconscious and unresponsive” when they tried to render aid.

Both skiers were hospitalized after the accident. The speeding skier only suffered minor injuries, but the victim tore a major neck artery and suffered a traumatic brain injury. She eventually died from cardiac arrest.

Aspen police decided not to charge the 53-year-old New York dermatologist for the accident, calling it a “horrible, horrible tragedy.” However, the victim’s estate believes that the defendant’s negligence caused the accident, so it has filed a civil lawsuit to hold her responsible.

The plaintiffs claim the surviving skier ignored plainly marked “slow “ ski warnings, and acted “negligently and recklessly” even after warnings to slow down. Their lawsuit accuses the woman of negligence, battery, wrongful death and violating key tenets of the Colorado Ski Safety Act.

Cases like this are tricky, because the court has to decide if the defendant could have prevented the accident by acting safely. Her speed, the conditions on the mountain and the injuries sustained by the victim will all factor into determining liability.

Personal lawsuits can be difficult, so victims need an experienced attorney on their side. Colorado’s Metier Law Firm has more than 20 years of experience helping victims of negligence.

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