A claim for a broken leg following a ski lift accident has been settled through out-of-court negotiations.
The claim for compensation was made by Tom Giddens, a twenty-five-year-old student from Solihull in the West Midlands. Tom and his friends went on a skiing holiday in Val Thorens, a ski resort in France. However, whilst he and one of his friends were on a ski lift for the last run of the day, the lift suddenly stopped around 200m from the top of the slope.
Despite the cold weather, Tom and his friend decided to stay on the lift for around half an hour. They attempted to call the emergency number provided by the lift operators, but could only get through to a message service in French.
Eventually, the pair grew too cold and uncomfortable and attempted get off the lift themselves. Whilst Tom’s friend managed to safely lower himself to the slope below, Tom decided to try and jump. Regrettably, he landed at an awkward angle and fractured his leg.
Help arrived quickly at the scene and Tom was brought the the ski resort’s own medical centre. There he was administer emergency first aid, and was subsequently transferred to the Moutiers Hospital. At the hospital, a metal pin was inserted into Tom’s leg to help set the bone.
Within a week of the surgery, Tom was flown back to the UK. He was then admitted to the Good Hope Hospital in Sutton Coldfield, where he stayed for a month. After he was discharged, he had to use crutches for many weeks and underwent an eighteen-month long course of physiotherapy. Tom, who was very physically active before the accident, reports that he has not been able to engage in as many of the sporting activities he did before the accident.
Tom sought legal counsel and proceeded to make a claim for personal injuries compensation against the ski lift operators, Societe D’Exploitation des Telepheriques Tarantaise-Maurienne. Tom alleged that the company did not have adequate safety standards. Though the company initially denied liability, after Tom filed for court proceedings in France they agreed to enter negotiations. The claim was then settled for an undisclosed five figures.