Skiing is a highly popular sport enjoyed by thousands of tourists in the Alps of France and Italy. Most people are aware that there are significant risks and that great care should be taken on the slopes and in surrounding areas as accidents happen regularly. The Times newspaper reported that the French National Mountain Safety Observation System (SNOSM) recorded more than 45,000 people were treated for injuries and 12 deaths were also reported during the course of the ski season in 2021-2022.

Giambrone & Partners' personal injury lawyers have assisted many clients with claims for compensation following a skiing accident and, whilst recognising that in the aftermath of a collision and injury on the slopes, a person may find it hard to think about the legal consequences, it is important that if someone skis into you and you are injured you should make every effort to find witnesses to the accident, including the medical team that comes to your assistance. As it can make the difference between success and failure, as has been seen in the press reports on the high-profile accident involving Gwyneth Paltrow, where the claimant had only one witness who was alleged to be too far away to see the accident properly.

OttaviaPulizzi, an associate, commented "The consequences of a skiing accident can be serious and you need to obtain as much evidence as possible to support your claim following a skiing accident if your injury is due to a third party's recklessness." Ottavia further pointed out "you have up to three years to bring a claim against an individual or an organisation's negligence in England & Wales. However, in other jurisdictions, this may vary. We can assist injured parties with claims in France and Italy and it is best to instruct a personal injury lawyer as soon as possible while the incident is still fresh in the memory and evidence can still be seen."

Giambrone & Partners' expert personal injury lawyers always seek interim payments, particularly if your injury prevents you from working and there will be a lengthy period of rehabilitation. If your claim is against an organisation for faulty equipment or faulty maintenance of equipment such as a ski lift or gondola our lawyers have considerable experience in fielding the ways a claim is defended by a defendant in an attempt to off-set responsibility and we can provide expert reports to support your claim.

It may be that some responsibility may be shared by the victim, as in the case reported in the Daily Mail newspaper where two men were travelling in a gondola under the influence of alcohol, when one man crashed through the plexiglass screen and fell 130 feet to his death. Drinking excessive alcohol on or near the slopes is clearly a high risk, however, gondolas are designed to accommodate twenty people and almost certainly questions will be asked about the capability of the plexiglass to withstand such an impact.

The International Ski Federation (FIS) provides comprehensive guidance and advice for safety on the slopes. Including the Rules of Conduct, such as the uphill skier has a duty of care to the downhill skier who has the right of way.

Regardless of whether your accident was caused by a reckless individual/s or a negligent organisation's failure to ensure that equipment was in good order, Giambrone & Partners leading lawyers in claims for compensation in alpine accidents and will guide you every step of the way through your claim.

Ottavia Pulizzi, an associate in the Palermo office, currently works within the Insurance department and has expertise in advising clients who have suffered personal injuries. Ottavia advises on the procedures to obtain compensation for damages relating to road traffic accidents, professional negligence, holiday accidents, accidents at work, sports injury claims, medical malpractice, trips and slips claims, damages caused by animals and pets, boat and aviation accidents. Ottavia coordinates negotiations between Giambrone, insurance companies and external representatives.

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.