Skiing is a favorite pastime of many people in and around the Portland area. Whether you take your family up for a week-long ski vacation or try to make it to the mountains as much as possible throughout the season, skiing is a rewarding activity. Unfortunately, skiing can also be risky and result in accidents and injuries.
Ski accidents result in a wide variety of injuries, including fractures, soft tissue tears, lacerations, and more. One common – yet worrisome – ski injury is a traumatic brain injury (TBI). TBIs can range from concussions (which are considered mild brain injuries but may nonetheless have serious consequences) to severe TBIs, which can cause coma, permanent impairment, and even death.
Some skiers think that wearing a helmet prevents brain injuries. This is not necessarily the case, however. Helmets do provide substantial protection, but sometimes a forceful collision can cause the brain to shift and impact the inside the skull, causing damage to brain tissue, despite wearing a helmet. Helmets can also fail or fly off in some situations, leaving skiers vulnerable to head trauma and brain injuries.
Effects of a TBI
The effects of a brain injury will depend on where the injury occurred in the brain and the extent of tissue damage suffered. While each person will experience a different type and degree of symptoms, signs of a brain injury can include:
- Memory loss
Moderate to severe TBIs can cause coma, meaning loss of consciousness for an extended period of time. In addition, doctors sometimes induce a coma to perform surgery and relieve pressure and swelling from a TBI. Recovering from any degree of brain injury can take time. Symptoms that may persist include:
- Cognitive difficulties with communication and information processing.
- Physical impairments with balance, speech, and coordination.
- Behavioral challenges involving changes in personality, mood, and difficulty showing appropriate emotion.
Overall, brain injuries can require costly medical care, disrupt your ability to work or go to school, and may cause long-term or permanent impairment.
Your Rights After a Ski Accident
Most people realize there are some risks inherent in skiing. However, you should not expect that the others will be negligent and create hazards that cause accidents and injuries. Types of negligence that cause ski accidents include:
- Careless skiers or snowboarders who collide with you.
- Fences, signs, and other obstacles placed in dangerous locations.
- Chair lift accidents caused by careless operators or poorly maintained equipment.
- Instructors who provide inadequate instruction or push you beyond your abilities.
- Rental equipment that is defective, improperly fitted, or inappropriate for your skill level.
Contact a Portland Ski Accident Law Firm as Soon as Possible
If someone else’s negligence caused an accident that resulted in your ski injuries, you should discuss your legal rights with a knowledgeable Portland ski injury attorney. Please call Rizk Law at 503-245-5677 or contact us online to schedule your free consultation today.