Schemery Zicolello

Chair lifts may present danger to Pennsylvanians

People all over Pennsylvania are enjoying the winter weather and winter activities. For many people, that means hitting the slopes and downhill skiing and snowboarding with friends and family. These winter sports, however, do not happen without risk. There is the possibility of injuries from fall on the slopes as they ride. But, there is another serious risk which people may not as aware of -- the chair lift.

Sadly, at least two children in Pennsylvania have suffered injuries from slipping and falling from a chair lift recently. In one case, a 9-year-old boy slipped from a ski lift. He was left dangling from the lift for several seconds before falling two stories -- around 20 feet -- into the snow below. He was injured in the fall but, reports say, he will recover.

Another incident occurred on the same day at a different Pennsylvania ski resort. In this case, a 5-year-old child slipped from a chair lift. Despite being a beginner chair lift, the boy fell 30 feet to the ground below. The boy is now in serious condition.

These boys join two others who were either seriously injured or killed on chair lifts across the nation recently.

When business invite other people to their property, it is their responsibility to keep people safe. In the case of a ski resort, equipment should be fully operational and safe. Safety warnings and safety equipment should be in use to minimize the risk of accidents.

When any Pennsylvania business does not take the proper steps to keep people safe, the property owner may be held liable for injuries. Premises liability laws allow people to collect damages when they are injured by a negligent business.

Source: ABC News, "Terrifying Video Shows 9-Year-Old Dangling From Chairlift," Jan. 12, 2015

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