Skiing injury victim receives damages

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Skiing injury victim receives damages

17th October 2011

A holidaymaker who suffered serious injuries when another skier collided into him has received £20,000 in compensation in an out of court settlement.

The Hampshire man in his forties was on holiday in the French Alps with his wife and friends when a man ploughed into him from behind at considerable speed.

Katherine Allen, head of the Travel and International Litigation team at Fentons Solicitors LLP, said: “On the day of his accident my client - who is a very competent skier - was skiing relatively slowly. After completing a wide relaxed turn across the piste he was suddenly subjected to a tremendous impact from behind.

“The next thing he remembers is fighting for breath and being in absolute agony,” said Katherine, a partner with the firm. ”Bleeding heavily from his nose and mouth, winded and barely conscious, he managed to get to his knees to see the man who had struck him standing about 20 feet away.”

Unable to ski down the slope, a mountain rescue team was summoned and the victim was taken down the mountain in a sledge before being airlifted to hospital.

“After being given morphine, my client received an x-ray which revealed he had suffered a number of fractured ribs,” said Katherine. “The doctors were so concerned with the level of damage to his ribs that they placed him in a torso wrap to prevent any further fractures from occurring.”

The victim was flown back to England the next day and taken by ambulance to hospital. “Owing to the amount of fluid in my client’s lungs, he developed pneumonia and was given antibiotics,” said Katherine. “Doctors expressed their astonishment at the severity of the impact and gave the man both a CT and an MRI scan so they could fully diagnose the extent of his injuries.”

The victim suffered six fractured ribs, severe shoulder damage and whiplash injuries to his neck which included a pinched nerve. “Incredibly, the defendant tried to claim that it was he who had been hit from behind,” said Katherine. “My client’s doctors however, were able to confirm that the level of impact and the extent of the injuries he suffered as a result were wholly consistent with having been struck from behind with considerable force.

“The negligent and terrifyingly reckless manner in which the defendant had been skiing was solely to blame for my client’s injuries,” said Katherine. “He breached a number of internationally recognised rules of skiing conduct and left my client in significant pain as a result. This man continues to suffer discomfort and limited mobility in his chest and neck. In addition, he has a constant dull ache in his right shoulder and he finds it extremely painful to lift anything heavy.

Katherine Allen successfully negotiated a settlement of £20,000 on behalf of her client.

How can Fentons Solicitors help?
Fentons has a specialist department experienced in handling claims relating to holiday accidents. If you think that you have a case or require further information, contact Fentons on 0800 019 1297 or fill in the online claims questionnaire.