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Careful on the Snow Slide

A recent Ontario Superior Court of Justice decision found a municipality was not responsible for the injuries suffered by a festival participant who broke her tail bone while sliding down a man-made snow slide.

In the case Martin v. The Corporation of the City of Barrie, the plaintiff was participating in a municipally sponsored festival. She rode a snow slide that was supervised by municipal staff. There was a chunk of ice sticking up on the slide, which the plaintiff crossed over. As a result, she did fracture her tail bone on that piece of ice. At the scene, the plaintiff did hear a staff member reference having “to fill the hole again.”

The court determined that the municipality met the standard of care owed to the plaintiff. The court noted that the standard of care is “not perfection”. In this case, the municipality did have staff on hand. As the staff became aware of problems it took steps to rectify them. The staff was trained to monitor the slide and the guests. The court also found that staff was given training about how to fill holes and gaps in the slide. 

The court also noted that sliding down snow slides is a very Canadian activity, which comes with it a certain degree of risk. In the circumstances, the plaintiff voluntarily assumed the risk of riding the slide.

The court determined that the municipality met its duty of care and dismissed the plaintiffs’ claim.

If you are looking to hire an Ottawa slip and fall lawyer. At LMS Lawyers, our lawyers offer personalized service to help you through one of the most challenging periods of your life. Call us at 613-230-5787 today to schedule a free 30-minute consultation.

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