Haltiwanger v. Phoenix Ski Corp. (Lawyers Weekly No. 12-16-0394, 11 pp.) (Ann Marie Calabria, J.) Appealed from Haywood County Superior Court. (Gary Gavenus, J.) N.C. App. Unpub. Full-text opinion.
Holding: A volunteer ski patroller testified that the ski run on which plaintiff was injured contains a “dip” that levels off and that skiers rest there. Since variations in terrain are common on ski slopes, and since skiers are statutorily required to be aware of these variations when skiing, the witness’ deposition testimony fails to establish that the “dip” constituted a hidden or dangerous condition.
We affirm summary judgment for the defendant-ski area operator.
Both the ski patroller and the resort’s general manager indicated that the ski run at issue is not an area where accidents usually occur.
Plaintiff’s evidence of a change in terrain on the ski run is not sufficient, standing alone, to demonstrate a dangerous condition or “hidden hazard.” Thus, defendant had no duty to warn plaintiff of the “dip.”
Plaintiff was injured when she collided with an off-duty resort employee, Luis Venegas, who was snowboarding. While defendant allowed its employees to ski when they were off duty, they were not required to do so. Moreover, Venegas was a ski lift operator, and there is no evidence that his off-duty snowboarding furthered defendant’s business in any way. The doctrine of respondeat superior does not apply in this case.