On April 4, 2005, Ms. Maney and Mr. Dunlap were snowboarding at Vail Ski Area in Eagle County, Colorado. As snowboarders, both Ms. Maney and Mr. Dunlap are considered "skiers" pursuant to the Colorado Ski Safety Act. C.R.S. § 33-44-103(8).
Ms. Maney and Mr. Dunlap were both boarding on the Bwana ski run, Mr. Dunlap uphill of Ms. Maney. Suddenly, and without warning or making certain that there were no skiers below, Mr. Dunlap jumped off an embankment above Ms. Maney, flew into the air, and collided into Ms. Maney, who was below the embankment.
Two ski patrollers provided emergency medical treatment to Ms. Maney on the mountain and transported her to the bottom of the mountain in a toboggan and, from there, she was taken to the hospital emergency room.
Mr. Dunlap provided testimony by deposition. He admitted that he was the uphill skier and that he caught air on a jump without being able to see below him. Ms. Maney had fallen below the area where Mr. Dunlap jumped, and Mr. Dunlap slammed into her.
The collision occurred on a green (easiest) ski trail. Beginner and less experienced skiers (such as Ms. Maney) are expected to be on this terrain. Mr. Dunlap testified that he is an expert snowboarder. Someone with his expertise should know not to not make a blind jump, especially on a trail for inexperienced skiers and snowboarders.
Ms. Maney sustained an ACL tear in her left knee in the April 4, 2005 snowboarder/snowboarder collision. She underwent two surgeries on her knee prior to resolution of the case, and was scheduled for a third surgery. Her medical expenses were over $71,000.00.
Twelve days after the collision (and two days before her scheduled MRI of the knee), Ms. Maney fell while trying to jump a three feet tall plastic barricade fence that had been unrolled for a music concert in Vail. Her knee gave way, causing her to fall. She called for ambulance transport. She was treated and released at the hospital.
Defendant claimed that Ms. Maney injured her knee at that time, and not during the snowboarding collision. However, Ms. Maney’s orthopedic specialist determined, to a reasonable degree of medical probability, that Ms. Maney’s injury occurred during the snowboarding collision.
The case was filed in federal court in June, 2006, in the United States District Court for the District of Colorado. It was settled in October, 2006 for policy limits of $101,000.00.
Past results are no guarantee of future results.