I suffered a zip line injury – can I sue?
The overall risk of a zip line injury is relatively low. However zip lines are becoming increasingly popular, particularly in Western North Carolina. The idea of flying through the mountains on zip lines is very attractive. However, because of a lack of regulation by the state and the high risk of injury, the risk of zip line injury is becoming more common. See a recent news story about a zip line injury here.
A lack of regulation by the state and the increased popularity has created many property owners to throw zip lines on their property and charge admission without making sure the zip line is safe. Unfortunately, not all zip lines have backup braking or other safety systems. Some zip lines require the rider to slow down with a glove on their hand, and offer no backup breaking system. Some zip lines do not have padding at the end of the zip where there is usually a wooden platform of some kind – exposing a rider to sharp wooden edges and corners. Ropes, connections, breaks, and other elements of zip line equipment may not be inspected routinely. Because of the height and speed of the lines, a zip line injury is often catastrophic. Most zip lines require a liability release waiver. For more information about this waiver, see my blog post I signed a liability release waiver, can I still sue?
A zip line injury is often the result of negligence or even gross negligence on the part of the zip line operator. A zip line injury lawyer will examine who had control of the ride, who maintained the equipment, or whether the operator may have failed to install proper safety equipment to prevent injuries.
If you or someone you know suffers from a zip line injury, it is important to find an attorney who understands zip lines and the zip line industry.
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James Minick is a criminal defense attorney in Asheville, NC and is the owner of Minick Law, P.C.