/ Is this a joke?

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Jackwd - on 16 Mar 2012
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/law-and-order/9146616/The-5ft-leap-at-Craggy-Island-that-may-...

What is the world coming too? Surely she will have signed a participation form?
mux - on 16 Mar 2012
In reply to Jackwd:Seems idiocy crosses all social and economic boundaries then

the article says all the right things huh ….sympathy hmm no..i think not

Competitive, Banking executive….. I dernt read on

I don’t remember the banks giving me a briefing about the risks they took with our money …but I still have to pay the price.

Life is risky ..she should know that.
Stone Muppet - on 16 Mar 2012
In reply to mux:
> I don’t remember the banks giving me a briefing about the risks they took with our money …but I still have to pay the price.

Haha thread win :-)
Jackwd - on 16 Mar 2012
In reply to Oceanrower: My bad, I rarely visit the pub for undisclosed reasons.
Oceanrower - on 16 Mar 2012
In reply to Jackwd: carry on. Other post got pulled!
The Lemming - on 16 Mar 2012
In reply to Oceanrower:
> (In reply to Jackwd) carry on. Other post got pulled!


Anybody know why it was pulled?

Were people being offensive to each-other?
In reply to The Lemming: been told that some comments were pushing the boat out.
dunc56 - on 16 Mar 2012
In reply to grumpybearpantsclimbinggoat:
> (In reply to The Lemming) been told that some comments were pushing the boat out.

Yes and if you slipped on that boat .......
JoshOvki on 16 Mar 2012
In reply to grumpybearpantsclimbinggoat:

I must have missed them comments. I thought it was a very interesting thread. It does seem a shame that they got sued, but it goes to show that bouldering can be dangerous too.
rogersavery - on 16 Mar 2012
In reply to Jackwd:

>Surely she will have signed a participation form?

doesnt matter what she signed, she can still sue
ste53 on 16 Mar 2012 - 5acbafcd.bb.sky.com
In reply to Jackwd:Your right, What is the world coming too ! £100,000 in her back pocket and we'll all have to pay for it when they put the price of insurance up at your local wall !
ste53 on 16 Mar 2012 - 5acbafcd.bb.sky.com
In reply to rogersavery: They should change the form's to clearly state in block capitals " I WILL NOT TRY TO SUE YOU FOR FALLING OFF THE BOULDERING WALL OR ANY OTHER CLIMBING RELATED INCIDENT ESPECIALLY IF IT IS CLEARLY MY OWN FAULT ! problem solved
outtathaway - on 16 Mar 2012
In reply to Jackwd: compensation culture gone mad, it's the kind of sum that could ruin such a business. I doubt a bank executive really needs all that money, as other people have also said the insurance will now go up.
lmarenzi - on 16 Mar 2012
In reply to grumpybearpantsclimbinggoat:

Lots to debate on this subject I think.

But the fact is that a climber has regrettably been quite badly hurt, and this has had consequences for those involved.

I agree with grumpy and think Ste should delete his comment. It simply adds insult to injury.

By a strange coincidence we did Crescent Arete yesterday, and one of us helicoptered off the crux. Although landing clean on the mat he comprehensively spannered his right ankle.

Although bouldering mats have been a godsend in general, it seems the chance of twisting your ankle if you helicopter onto them is higher than the same fall on clean ground (I have tried both ways on CA).
Ed F - on 16 Mar 2012
In reply to ste53:

Nope - businesses aren't allowed to exclude liability for negligently caused personal injury. See UCTA 1977.

It will always turn on whether the wall was negligent, whatever forms the customer signs...
Graeme Alderson on 16 Mar 2012
In reply to ste53: Yes that would work because that is a very cleverly and legalistic way of saying things.
outtathaway - on 16 Mar 2012
In reply to lmarenzi: I'm sure the money will help soothe the pain. It's a bad injury but not the end of the world.
54ms - on 16 Mar 2012
I was quite outraged when I read the headline, but reading more carefully it was part of a "team building" day. She wasn't a member.

I do warn people of the risks when I take them bouldering, but sometimes when you're working with a fun group and they get fired up, it's easy to push them to try harder problems, where there is a higher risk of falling as you want them to go away buzzing.

It's made me think twice that's for sure.
Graeme Alderson on 16 Mar 2012
In reply to ste53: If my insurance doubled it would cost me an extra 12.5p per customer. One case against us is unlikely to double my insurance though.
In reply to Ed Feldman: Although I'm told there are signs next to the bouldering cave advising to climb down the judge saw it sufficient to apportion 2/3rds blame on Craggy.

I do hope this doesn't affect them too much.

The £100K is what her lawyers are claiming she should have (so a total £150k claim) but that doesn't necessarily say she will get that amount.

Personally, I would make sure that visitors are informed of the risks associated with climbing and to follow the instructions in the set areas. Failure to do so would negate responsibility.

Not sure if that is enforceable though.

A very sad situation in my opinion.
ste53 on 16 Mar 2012 - 5acbafcd.bb.sky.com
In reply to Ed Feldman: Well the LAW need's changing then ! If you want to play it safe join the tiddly wink's whilst wearing safety goggle club , if you want to go climbing you'll get hurt end of! if you couldn't be hurt whilst climbing then it would take all the jiz out of it and would then be no point !
In reply to The Lemming:

There were abusive comments about the woman involved and she has shown herself quite prepared to use the law hence we couldn't allow it to stay up.

I will have to do the same to this thread if people start slagging of the woman so please don't.

Alan
ste53 on 16 Mar 2012 - 5acbafcd.bb.sky.com
In reply to lmarenzi: You need delete yourself ! it's people like HER and you that have doubled the price of indoor walls
Graeme Alderson on 16 Mar 2012
In reply to ste53: You mean like in the USA where you can disclaim negligence. So if a bolt or a quickdraw fails you can't sue.

The problem is not the law, it is the way the law is interpretated in courts, particularly civil courts.
54ms - on 16 Mar 2012
In reply to ste53:

Can I just stress again this was part of a team building day and not a member of the public who turned up to do a boulder induction and become a member.

Graeme Alderson on 16 Mar 2012
In reply to ste53:
> that have doubled the price of indoor walls

What are you talking about. Insurance at The Climbing Works is approx 2% of turnover. And that insurance covers everything (Employers Liability, Business Interruption, Shop Stock etc as well as Public Liability). The Public Liabilityelement of that insurance is less than 50% ie about 1% of turnover.

Double Knee Bar - on 16 Mar 2012
In reply to Jackwd: I think everyone who works at HBOS should be lined up and shot in front of their families.
Just kidding.
Seriously though, expecting £100,000 for breaking your ankle at a climbing wall is a joke.
ste53 on 16 Mar 2012 - 5acbafcd.bb.sky.com
In reply to Graeme Alderson: My local wall was £4.50 less than ten year's ago , nothing has changed but the routes yet it now cost's £8.00 !! that's nearly double in ten years , i dont know about you but my wage's have not doubled in ten years .
Richard Alderton - on 16 Mar 2012
In reply to Graeme Alderson:
> The Public Liabilityelement of that insurance is less than 50% ie about 1% of turnover.

That surprises me. I've always though that insurance was a major expense. You learn something every day.
graeme jackson - on 16 Mar 2012
In reply to jamesgreenfield:
> I doubt a bank executive really needs all that money,

She's not an executive, she's an insurance underwriter.
myth - on 16 Mar 2012
In reply to Jackwd: This in no way is related to the lady in question.

But if I were to claim damages from a climbing wall for an accident similar to this, I would be feeling pretty shameful. I would also not think very highly of myself. I would also be tempted to donate ALL of the money to a very good cause to salvage some my reputation for my foolish actions.

Again this is just what I would be thinking about myself in this situation. I have no opinion of the lady in the aforementioned posts. I don't know her and would not like to judge without meeting her first.
ste53 on 16 Mar 2012 - 5acbafcd.bb.sky.com
In reply to 54ms: I dont care who it was or what they were doing if they are over the age of 18 then they should be bright enough to realise you can get hurt when climbing ! - simple as that ., i have never done a bouldering induction or a climbing induction and have managed just fine for over ten years with just the common sence my parents gave me !
The Lemming - on 16 Mar 2012
In reply to Alan James - UKC and UKH:
> (In reply to The Lemming)
>
> There were abusive comments about the woman involved and she has shown herself quite prepared to use the law hence we couldn't allow it to stay up.

Fair point, and one which I completely understand.

it is indeed a sad world that we live in when people lo longer take responsibility for their actions and resultant consequences.

Climbing and bouldering, or indeed any activity which involves an individual to move from one place to another can be dangerous.

:-(
Graeme Alderson on 16 Mar 2012
In reply to ste53: Firstly it's not nearly double it is less than 80%.

Using an easy to find on line inflation calculator you might have expected the price to rise to 5.85. So you have a 37% rise above inflation.

But you are saying that the price rise is purely because of Public Liability insurance rises. I am saying that you are wrong about this and gave you the example of The Climbing Works (of which I am one of the owners). I can tell you that insurance for climbing walls went down significantly post 2001 when they did escalate massively. One wall that I know of was getting quoted £25,000 in 2001, now (over 10 years later) I am pretty sure that walls insurance will be less than £10,000 when taken on a like for like basis.

graeme jackson - on 16 Mar 2012
In reply to Double Knee Bar:
> (In reply to Jackwd) I think everyone who works at HBOS should be lined up and shot in front of their families.

As an employee of HBOS I take exception to that remark and hope to meet you in a dark alleyway some day.

Would your remark have been any different if she had worked for save the children?

Simon Caldwell - on 16 Mar 2012
In reply to 54ms:
> Can I just stress again this was part of a team building day and not a member of the public who turned up to do a boulder induction and become a member.

She should have sued HBOS instead for making her go on a team building day
alan_davies - on 16 Mar 2012
In reply to Jackwd: My feelings on this matter are that a everyone should take action in the same vein whenever something bad happens to them. There is always someone to blame, and its never you/me. I'm sure the country will run much better if we all adopt a healthy litigation culture leading to a likewise healthy suspicion of our fellow man/woman. I feel this in no way is a symptom of the slow degradation of human society, and a sign of reverse evolution. On the contrary i think the lady in question is to be applauded for her bravery, as a shining example of the future we can all look forward to.

Can i officially resign from the human race now please...?
ThunderCat - on 16 Mar 2012
In reply to Alan James - UKC and UKH:
> (In reply to The Lemming)
>
> There were abusive comments about the woman involved and she has shown herself quite prepared to use the law hence we couldn't allow it to stay up.
> Alan

You'll allow threads where we slag off people who aren't legally savvy then?

Doesn't sound very noble...

:)
Richard Alderton - on 16 Mar 2012
In reply to Alan James - UKC and UKH:
> There were abusive comments about the woman involved and she has shown herself quite prepared to use the law hence we couldn't allow it to stay up.

I hope it wasn't my comments?

I posted something that was highly critical of her, and in no uncertain terms. But it was clearly my opinion, rather than fact.
balmybaldwin - on 16 Mar 2012
In reply to Jackwd:

Whilst a number of assumptions have been made, talking to our Personal injury specialists, the estimate put on damages by the woman's lawyers even for a very severe compound fracture are probably over estimated by around 500% (top end i.e. permanant disfigurament and likely amputation in future gets around £40K - this would be considered Moderate at most- top end £20K)usnig standard JSB (Judicial Studies Board) guidelines. On top of this she might be entitled to some compensation for not being able to work... however a shattered ankle doesn't really stop you working as an insurance office bod (which I believe she was). It may extend to providing her taxi's to and from work if she had receipts.

out of date site with other breakdowns but not definitions: http://personalinjuryclaims1.co.uk/jsb-guidelines-personal-injury/
andic - on 16 Mar 2012
In reply to graeme jackson:
> (In reply to Double Knee Bar)
> [...]
>
> As an employee of HBOS I take exception to that remark and hope to meet you in a dark alleyway some day.
>
> Would your remark have been any different if she had worked for save the children?

Nice bit of selective quoting,......
Simon4 - on 16 Mar 2012
In reply to Graeme Alderson:

> The problem is not the law, it is the way the law is interpretated in courts, particularly civil courts.

Generally the courts have been quite reasonable and pragmatic, when it finally comes to court - volentia non fit injuria. This case seems to be an exception. Of course, by the time it gets to court, the wall will have been put through the wringer by all the costs and possible consequences.

I recall a case (of much more serious injury than this), where the intial judgement was that the wall was 25% responsible, the individual was 75% responsible. The individual (who was paralysed, so really did have a need for funds to pay for lifetime care), was very badly advised to go for appeal, then had his initial payment reversed by the appeal court, so he ended up getting nothing.

Not wishing to be rude about this lady, in view of Allan's caution, but she does seem to lack the realism that might be expected of a risk-assessor.
54ms - on 16 Mar 2012
In reply to ste53:
> (In reply to 54ms) I dont care who it was or what they were doing if they are over the age of 18 then they should be bright enough to realise you can get hurt when climbing ! - simple as that ., i have never done a bouldering induction or a climbing induction and have managed just fine for over ten years with just the common sence my parents gave me !

And that's what makes you a climber and I tend agree with you. :)

However the perception is that if you go along on a team building day then the risks will be managed so you don't get hurt. After all that what's the soft padding's for.
the real slim shady - on 16 Mar 2012
In reply to graeme jackson: did you not read the rest of his comment, he did point out that he was joking. Its like when JC said people on strike should be shot in front of their families and despite it clearly being a joke, everyone blew it out of proportion, so please don't misquote a joke
Double Knee Bar - on 16 Mar 2012
In reply to graeme jackson: I'm sorry. The comment was in reference to the cencorship involved and relating that to the whole Jeremy Clarkson fiasco before Christmas.
I don't really have any qualms with people that work for HBOS.
Except maybe ones that are waiting for me in dark alleyways ;-).
Anonymous on 16 Mar 2012 - 217-14-183-26.as25582.net
In reply to Richard Alderton:
> (In reply to Alan James - UKC and UKH)
> [...]
>
> I hope it wasn't my comments?
>
> I posted something that was highly critical of her, and in no uncertain terms. But it was clearly my opinion, rather than fact.

I would never say a peep under my own name to someone who can succesfuly get £100K for a broken ankle.

So just incase she gets upset at me calling her a spoil-sport pooface, that up there ^^ isnt my IP address, and I am anonymous guy fawkes blah blah.

Stu Jones on 16 Mar 2012
In reply to graeme jackson:

Ha Ha! Yeah, just Ha Ha!
Richard Alderton - on 16 Mar 2012
In reply to Anonymous:
> I would never say a peep under my own name to someone who can succesfuly get £100K for a broken ankle.

I'd rather stand by my comments and face the music.

However, it's UKC that would be facing the music for anything that you or I might say, so it's a bit of a moot point.
graeme jackson - on 16 Mar 2012
In reply to andic:
> (In reply to graeme jackson)
> [...]
>
> Nice bit of selective quoting,......

Which propels me into the UKC Elite.

Seriously though. I get pretty fed up when everyone who works for a banking organisation gets branded an overpaid, overbonused scumbag and then gets 'jokingly' threatened with a shooting.
antdav - on 16 Mar 2012
A price increase from £4.50 to £8 over 10 years is a little over 5% a year so isnt too far off inflation.

This case is another example of the health and safety culture going over board. Being that this is a climbing forum we will all jump in to defend the wall but without knowing what level of induction they underwent its difficult to know how much blame they should take, I assume as a minimum the group should have been informed the mats aren't fail safe, injuries do happen, don't climb too high if youre not confident, they should down climb before dropping, spinning is dangerous, dont walk/stand under others, the best way to fall/drop etc.

Now that there is precedence this will probably have a knock on effect through a lot of walls where all taster sessions will either include a safety intro to bouldering or they'll keep this type of group off the bouldering mats altogether as a second safety session will take up too much time.

Hopefully it wont have too much of an impact on the wall concerned or the insurance premiums in the industry, also hope the 100k quoted is what the lawyers are going for and not what is finally given, I would have thought that the legal system would be trying to reduce the numbers of claims like this by making it less financially worthwhile.
tistimetogo on 16 Mar 2012
In reply to Jackwd:

Congratulations this wins the most ridiculous item of the day award.

Also amusing to see users trying to tip toe around the insults. We all know what we're thinking but we're not able to say it. Bloody thought police.
wercat on 16 Mar 2012
In reply to Jackwd:

Distilling out the bare facts as stated it appears that this woman was injured as a consequence of an exercise organised for her team by the employer. Why should she not be due some compensation for such an injury?

It does call into question the appropriateness of some team building activities where there is a mix of ages within the group. Anyone can be unlucky but there is a tendency to injure more easily as one ages. As well as perhaps tending to be less agile and heavier than when younger.

Perhaps Employers and centres need to consider this and be more thoughtful ofthe consequences when handling "volunteered" groups rather than those who actively seek adventure?

Not making any comment however about the scale of compensation as we don't know her long term injuries, but her only fault seems to have been over enthusiasm
graeme jackson - on 16 Mar 2012
In reply to Double Knee Bar:
>> I don't really have any qualms with people that work for HBOS.

Just to demonstrate how the press constantly get things wrong, no-one works for HBOS any more, not even me. We're all Lloyds banking group employees.
And don't worry too much about alleyways,,,, I'm scared of the dark :-)
The Ivanator - on 16 Mar 2012
In reply to wercat: but her only fault seems to have been over enthusiasm

I think the fault lies in the morally bankrupt decision to try and make financial gain from what was an old fashioned accident.
Bad things do sometimes happen in life, and shock horror ...there is not always someone to blame.
wercat on 16 Mar 2012
In reply to The Ivanator:

yes, the amount claimed does seem somewhat high, and without having been there it isn't possible to judge how much she put herself in danger, but i you psych inexperienced people up it is quite usual for some to become over confident, and that might have been forseeable
tony on 16 Mar 2012
In reply to Luuuke:
>
> can't remember the last time i read something that disgusted me this much.

Seriously? You must lead a very sheltered life. In among all the other crap that goes on in the world, this one's barely worth a moment's outrage.
Mike Stretford - on 16 Mar 2012
In reply to antdav:
>
> Now that there is precedence this will probably have a knock on effect through a lot of walls where all taster sessions will either include a safety intro to bouldering or they'll keep this type of group off the bouldering mats altogether as a second safety session will take up too much time.
>

That would be a good thing IMO. I've seen this type of thing a few times down the wall, a suggestion at the end of a roped sesion that the customers go off and play on the bouldering wall.... silly. The bouldering wall isn't a safe place for a random cross section of society to be.

A hope the payout isn't too large and the wall isn't adversely effected.
Luuuke - on 16 Mar 2012
Or maybe you can sue me for doing the pushing... No... that would be far to sensible.
Luuuke - on 16 Mar 2012
Howardw1968 - on 16 Mar 2012
In reply to Jackwd:
£100K is probably her legal fees, I suspect they make good money winning these cases
ads.ukclimbing.com
deepsoup - on 16 Mar 2012
In reply to myth:
> But if I were to claim damages from a climbing wall for an accident similar to this...

You'd be pretty unlikely to succeed anyway - because you know the risks, the principle of "volenti non fit injuria" would apply, as it did in the unfortunate case of Gary Poppleton a few years ago:
http://www.ukclimbing.com/forums/t.php?t=306025
Niall - on 16 Mar 2012
In reply to Luuuke:
> Im much more disgusted by this man: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y4MnpzG5Sqc

Bloody hell, is this going to be the new 'Dan Osman speedclimbing'?
Turdus torquatus on 16 Mar 2012
In reply to Richard Alderton:
> (In reply to Anonymous)
> [...]
>
>
> However, it's UKC that would be facing the music for anything that you or I might say, so it's a bit of a moot point.

Are you sure about that? Where are the libel lawyers when you need them?

taps323 - on 16 Mar 2012
In reply to Jackwd:

I think something that has potentially been lost on people is the lack of awareness towards the instructors involved. I know one of the instructors who was involved with this incident and he is an exceptional instructor, lucky for him he is fine and dandy. But if this womans actions had lead to the instructor facing the consequences, does this woman care that she would of ruined someones life, especially considering she has signed a 'disclaimer' (you cant call it this i know ABC) and listened to a safety brief which i have heard the individual instructor give thousands of times, which includes 'not jumping off and climbing down so you can step off' and 'only go as high as your happy to go'.
The long and short of it is, she is compus mentis (supposedly) and she (or at least the centre did not coax her into participation) took part in a challenge by choice activity. Therefore she was the creator of her own destiny and so the instigator of her own injury.
ste53 on 16 Mar 2012 - 5acbafcd.bb.sky.com
In reply to 54ms: Well that might be your perception but to me i have always seen the danger of jumping on to the mat or jumping on to anything for that matter !
54ms - on 16 Mar 2012
In reply to ste53:

8 years of instructing have taught me you can never over estimate the stupidity of otherwise seemingly intelligent folk. :(
Neil Williams - on 16 Mar 2012
In reply to ste53:

You're, presumably, a climber, though.

One of the reasons I don't boulder often is that I've got a greater chance of injury if I fall off uncontrolled than on a rope (be that top rope or lead). But I'm a climber, so I know that. I can see how someone who isn't a climber might conclude that soft mats=safe.

Neil
cap'nChino - on 16 Mar 2012
In reply to Neil Williams:
> (In reply to ste53)
>
> I can see how someone who isn't a climber might conclude that soft mats=safe.


I can see what you’re getting at but at some point a climber must take responsibility for herself.

At what height does it become unsafe to climb above a mat? 1m, 2m 10m? Clearly it varies person to person/climb to climb so even if the wall wanted set limits/train/supervise etc it would be futile. The climber must decide and deal with the consequences (being a pussy all the way through to breaking ankle) as to when they are out of their depth.

I recall someone breaking their ankle from an indoor traverse their foot was 20cm off the ground.
mark s - on 16 Mar 2012
In reply to ThunderCat:
> (In reply to Alan James - UKC and UKH)
> [...]
>
> You'll allow threads where we slag off people who aren't legally savvy then?
>
> Doesn't sound very noble...
>
> :)

exactly what i thought.people get ripped to bits every week on here.i guess if you know the law you are safe
Howardw1968 - on 16 Mar 2012
In reply to Jackwd:
I'm sitting here wondering what difference it would have made if she had said she 'fell' off rather than 'jumped' she has some integrity.
cap'nChino - on 16 Mar 2012
In reply to Howardw1968:
> (In reply to Jackwd)
> I'm sitting here wondering what difference it would have made if she had said she 'fell' off rather than 'jumped' she has some integrity.

Broken neck?
Howardw1968 - on 16 Mar 2012
In reply to cap'nChino:
I meant in the legal case.
tom_in_edinburgh - on 16 Mar 2012
In reply to Jackwd:

I'm not sure about the whole 'thought it was safe because of the mats' explanation. Most adult novices aren't thoughtlessly jumping off from the top with total confidence in the mats, they are gripping on for dear life at the top because it looks far too high to jump and then realising they don't have the strength to climb down and jumping because they don't have an option.

They are getting in that situation because:
1. Novices don't appreciate the difference between how high a bouldering wall looks when you are standing on the ground and how high it feels when you are at the top and need to jump off or climb down. Taking them up higher walls on a top rope first may magnify this perception.

2. Novices that have only climbed a couple of 3's or 4's on a top rope get a shock when they get high on a V0 or V1 because the holds are smaller. They are overconfident of their ability to climb up and down again more than overconfident of the mats. Then they grip hard, don't have the finger strength, get scared and fluff the jump off.



Howard J - on 16 Mar 2012
In reply to Jackwd: I don't think it's surprising that a non-climber who's gone to a wall for a bit of fun will assume that she'll be safe there, especially where she's encouraged to climb without ropes. If there are no ropes, surely it must be safe to fall off? And if it's safe to fall off, then it will be safe to jump off, won't it?

The general media often write about indoor climbing and give the impression that it's a safe environment. A non-climber seeing those big comfy mats is likely to gain the impression that they're safe and it's entirely OK to fall or jump onto them. And you do see experienced climbers falling and even jumping from bouldering walls onto the mats.

Slagging the woman off for not using her common sense is missing the point. She's in an unfamiliar artificial environment where people who know more about it than her have given the impression that, despite what her common sense tells her, she'll be safe. She's entitled to suspend her common sense and rely on the experts. So it comes down to what the experts did to make her realise that actually it isn't safe. In this case the court has ruled they didn't do enough.
Enty - on 16 Mar 2012
In reply to Howard J:
> (In reply to Jackwd) I don't think it's surprising that a non-climber who's gone to a wall for a bit of fun will assume that she'll be safe there, especially where she's encouraged to climb without ropes. If there are no ropes, surely it must be safe to fall off? And if it's safe to fall off, then it will be safe to jump off, won't it?
>
>

Eh?? My daughter definitely knows that if she jumps off the wall at the back of the house (about 5ft) there's a chance it might hurt - whether it's onto the grass, onto the concrete or onto my bouldering mat (she's 6)

E
nicktr - on 16 Mar 2012
In reply to Enty: we've all no doubt seen a novice being belayed down from a top rope, and they cling to the rope for dear life, so they know the risks...she should have had enough common sense that if you fall or jump off the top of the bouldering wall and land at an angle its going to hurt! even a 2 year old could work that one out
highclimber - on 16 Mar 2012
In reply to Enty: I might put in a claim against warrington wall where I sprained my ankle a couple years ago...Then again, im not a compensation-seeking fiend with a penchant for stupidity.

There is no doubt in my mind that she was old enough to understand the risks of what she was doing and should get nothing but I'm not the Judge. I hope there is leave for appeal and I hope the instructor involved doesn't beat themself up too much about it.
FB - on 16 Mar 2012
In reply to ste53:
> (In reply to rogersavery) They should change the form's to clearly state in block capitals " I WILL NOT TRY TO SUE YOU FOR FALLING OFF THE BOULDERING WALL OR ANY OTHER CLIMBING RELATED INCIDENT ESPECIALLY IF IT IS CLEARLY MY OWN FAULT ! problem solved

Here Here good call
Shani - on 16 Mar 2012
In reply to Howard J:
> Slagging the woman off for not using her common sense is missing the point. She's in an unfamiliar artificial environment where people who know more about it than her have given the impression that, despite what her common sense tells her, she'll be safe. She's entitled to suspend her common sense and rely on the experts. So it comes down to what the experts did to make her realise that actually it isn't safe. In this case the court has ruled they didn't do enough.

I am just trying to work out whether you or her would drown in a swimming pool because it is an 'artificial environment' and think that the laws of biology don't apply indoors as they do when you swim in the sea.

For the record, the laws of physics apply at an indoor wall as they do outdoors. My children could have told her that and they have far less experience than this woman's 44 years.
lmarenzi - on 16 Mar 2012
In reply to Jackwd:

No joke.

Someone got hurt. It was someone else's fault. They are going to have to make good the damage.

Car crash, medical malpractice, injury at work. Whatever.

Deal with it.
Shani - on 16 Mar 2012
In reply to lmarenzi:
> (In reply to Jackwd)
>
> No joke.
>
> Someone hurt THEMSELF. It was THEIR fault. They are going to SEEK TO PASS THE BLAME AND make SOME MONEY.
>
> Car crash, medical malpractice, injury at work. Whatever.
>
> Deal with it.

There, I've fixed that for you.
The Ex-Engineer - on 16 Mar 2012
In reply to 54ms:
> 8 years of instructing have taught me you can never over estimate the stupidity of otherwise seemingly intelligent folk. :(

The most apt comment I have read for ages.
The Ex-Engineer - on 16 Mar 2012
In reply to various: Putting my super cynical hat on, I have to say what does Craggy Island expect to happen when it uses an extreme sport training facility to run corporate team building exercises...

It is obvious to anyone with a knowledge of climbing that bouldering is a relatively high risk activity to use for 'team building'. I would not go as far as to suggest that it is inappropriate, but even the most cursory risk assessment would have identified the bouldering as having a much higher risk of injury than top-roping or other activities the group in question partook in.

I would suggest that if climbing walls are venturing outside their core market of people who genuinely want to climb and a few kids birthday parties they should look at how Go Ape run their activities. Their procedures are excessively anal but they are specifically designed with avoiding litigation in mind - and in that regard they work superbly. AFAIK every potential case of litigation against them has stopped dead in its tracks once solicitors have seen the level of documentary evidence the company has relating to every site, every instructor, every group and every individual client.

The specific relevance to this case is that at Go Ape the safety briefs are given verbatim from a script and there is documentary evidence to support when it was delivered to each group.

On the other hand, before I get too many complaints, I must say that I deplore the fact that companies dealing with the general public (or at least the rich middle class) now need to design safety procedures to cope with the potential that events may be contested after the fact. It is a damning indictment of modern Britain. It is also, to be fair to Craggy and their staff, a very depressing way in which to have to view potential customers and is an outlook which is completely alien to most people who are passionate about outdoor pursuits.

That is some ways leads back to my first point, it might just be less unpleasant for everyone involved in climbing if we keep climbing walls for climbers...
glennofsheff - on 16 Mar 2012
In reply to Howard J:
> (In reply to Jackwd)
> A non-climber seeing those big comfy mats is likely to gain the impression that they're safe and it's entirely OK to fall or jump onto them.
Despite reading a notice saying "DO NOT JUMP " or an instructor advising you "NOT TO JUMP" ?

In reply to The Ex-Engineer: very good post - some walls like in sheffield with a high climbing population might be able to be a wall for climbers but a high rental property in or near London with a lower ratio of climbers to non-climbers the business model may have climbers as a contribution and non-climbing people as profit models (ie group birthday/corporate bookings etc).

As you say Go Ape is a good example to follow when your profit market is not necessarily what you expected (ie cheapskate climbers already arriving with their own gear so no rentals/gear buying options and would rather drink their own recycled water than pay 50p for a cup of tea).
ste53 on 16 Mar 2012 - 5ad022c1.bb.sky.com
In reply to Graeme Alderson: Fair enough and i dont think that insurance is 100% to blame but the fact is my local wall has still nearly doubled it's price's for whatever reasons ?!
I know if i ran an insurance company and i saw £100,000 pay out's for bouldering it would defo raise a few questions which would not be good for us !
For the record i went to the works the first week it openend and it was amazing ,i have been at least once a month ever scince and it never fail's to amaze me how often you change things round ,comp wall's,routes e,c,t and yet your price's seem the same or close to the first year you opened,
The climbing works is 50/60 miles away from my house so unlucky me is stuck with the same old never changing rip off evey week
dissonance - on 16 Mar 2012
In reply to ste53:
> (In reply to rogersavery) They should change the form's to clearly state in block capitals " I WILL NOT TRY TO SUE YOU FOR FALLING OFF THE BOULDERING WALL OR ANY OTHER CLIMBING RELATED INCIDENT ESPECIALLY IF IT IS CLEARLY MY OWN FAULT ! problem solved

wouldnt be enough in itself. you cant sign away your rights in that sort of scenario (least that was the legal advice from the student union for sports clubs when i was there).
If it was clearly your own fault you wouldnt have a chance anyway, just that the legal view of what is clear may differ from yours, or indeed mine, with regards to this case.

Good example of why health and safety gone mad can occur though.
Martin20 - on 17 Mar 2012
In reply to Jackwd:

Common sense would make the risks of bouldering obvious, and any six year old would understand the dangers of jumping off a wall. But unfortunately safety culture and fear of litigation has removed all risk from most forms of organised activity so people no longer engage their common sense.
mwr72 - on 17 Mar 2012
In reply to Jackwd:

Do Craggy not have the BMC notices that state something like 'Climbing is a dangerous activity and can result in serious injury or even death'? I've seen these notices at lots of walls i've visited over the years.
Hannes on 17 Mar 2012
In reply to Jackwd: Yes, it is frankly a joke. Not the good kind though
FB - on 17 Mar 2012
In reply to Jackwd: The person I feel most sorry for in all this is not the centre or the lady who made her own free judgment to jump from the bolder wall onto the hard crash mats but the poor instructor who is having to go through all this after delivering the activity specified by the centre in the format that they set out.

Hope the instructor involved is not to badley effected in all this.
john arran - on 17 Mar 2012
It's entirely possible that the woman in question had private health insurance and that a condition of payout was that all legal avenues are pursued first, which would leave her in a very difficult position and possibly looking at a huge bill unless she went along with it. I stress I have no knowledge of this case and this is merely one possible explanation, as I have seen cases before resulting from similar situations. Blame it on an under-supported NHS, maybe blame it on private health company policy, but it may not be the simple case of selfish money-grabbing opportunism as many seem to be presuming.
Howardw1968 - on 17 Mar 2012
In reply to Jackwd:
DIdn't they used to walk over hot coals a tema building days till someone burnt themselves and sued?
dissonance - on 17 Mar 2012
In reply to Howardw1968:
> (In reply to Jackwd)
> DIdn't they used to walk over hot coals a tema building days till someone burnt themselves and sued?

Would have been right to sue as well. Mean the wrong type of coal had been used.
Simon Caldwell - on 17 Mar 2012
In reply to ste53:
> the fact is my local wall has still nearly doubled it's price's for whatever reasons ?!

Judging by what's happened to my Council Tax over the same period, I'd hazard a guess that rates and other similar costs are the biggest factor.
Tiberius - on 17 Mar 2012
In reply to FB:
> ...the activity specified by the centre in the format that they set out.

The court found that he didn't. That seems to be the issue. The judgement clearly states that the centre broke their own guidelines.

I know nothing about this case, however some people are making statements and assumptions that are clearly not what the court case discovered.
Howard J - on 17 Mar 2012
In reply to Shani:
> (In reply to Howard J)
> [...]
>
> I am just trying to work out whether you or her would drown in a swimming pool because it is an 'artificial environment' and think that the laws of biology don't apply indoors as they do when you swim in the sea.
>
It would depend on what activities she was being encouraged to do by the instructors. A non-swimmer might allow themselves to be coaxed into deeper water by an instructor when their common sense was telling them to stay in the shallow end. A swimmer might have to overcome "common sense" to go off the high diving board.

To a non-climber, "proper climbing" is the stuff with ropes. A bouldering area with nice its soft cushions looks like, as she put it, a "play area" . It looks as if it's safe to fall off. And lets face it, a lot of experienced climbers treat it like that, we're just a bit more aware of the dangers of doing so.

If we listed to our "common sense" none of us would ever start climbing. We learn to overrule common sense, based on assurances by more experienced climbers that the rope will hold us and won't break. Anyone who has climbed with a gripped novice will have told them just to make the move, "you'll be OK", when their "common sense" tells them they won't be.

In time we build up sufficient experience to make our own judgements on what is and isn't safe, but to begin with we rely on what others tell us. In this case, the court has decided that the wall didn't do enough to inform her of the dangers. I'm not particularly happy with the decision either, but in the circumstances its not surprising.
a lawyer writes on 17 Mar 2012 - client-82-0-14-82.mcr-bng-012.adsl.virginmedia.net
In reply to Jackwd: This case was fought and lost on the basis of the evidence. As with the case against Warwick University the evidence (or lack thereof) was such to allow the inference that the defendant's did not properly assess, manage and communicate risk and had a casual approach to risk management and their responsibilities.

Had they better processes and more rigorous systems with regards to evidencing their risk management policies and a more diligent approach generally then the chances of defeating the claim would have been reasonable.

Climbing walls are a risky environment and climbing is a risky activity; as such the burden on the owners and operators of facilities is consequentially higher. If you are aware of the risk or willfully blind to it and do not take steps to both manage and mitigate the risk as well as advising the visitors of the nature and extent of the risk then you will be liable should the risk materialise.

Poppleton is distinguishable and whilst it was considered it was not applied.

The point is that here, there was no true informed consent that would allow volenti to apply; indeed the Judge commented that this was not a true volenti case but rather one where the defendant having been found negligent a question of the apportionment of the contributory negligence of the claimant.

I haven't seen the pleadings but I would imagine that the majority of the value of the claim would be in loss of earnings or a claim for past and future care. In any event this was a split trial, now liability has been established I would imagine the matter will settle; without the medical reports etc I would imagine even a complex lower leg / ankle / foot fracture and STI will have a quantum of below £12,000 (unless there's scaring / shortening) so if there's no significant LOE claim I'd say as a total guess £30,000 gross £20,000 net all in should cover it.

Costs on the other hand could well run with a success fee to £120,000 for both parties.

I just hope the defendant's have some P36 costs protection . . . The moral of the story is if you run a climbing wall run it well.
Graeme Alderson on 17 Mar 2012
In reply to a lawyer writes: Thanks for the advice Tom ;-)
Paul at work - on 17 Mar 2012
In reply to a lawyer writes: Warwick University case? What happened there?
a lawyer writes on 17 Mar 2012 - client-82-0-14-82.mcr-bng-012.adsl.virginmedia.net
In reply to Paul at work: The claimant fell from the roof of the old bouldering wall resulting in a slap injury to the shoulder and a spiral fracture to the left lower leg.

The factual matrix was at issue to the hearing and there is little to be gained in discussing whether the hold did spin or not.

The wall had grossly inadequate systems of record keeping and at the highest a questionable approach to risk management.

The key witness for the defendant was not considered to be a witness who could be relied upon.

I cannot understand how the defendant's ran the matter to a trial.

The claimant recovered £100k and costs are not in public domain but I would imagine that they would have been in the region of £300,000 (including the 100% uplift)
Paul at work - on 17 Mar 2012
In reply to a lawyer writes: When was this?
cap'nChino - on 17 Mar 2012
In reply to a lawyer writes: I dont think the issue with this story is the legal one. Undeniably, in court and by the letter of the law the climbing centre was in the wrong.

The issue is peoples lack of self responsibility and willingness to blame someone else for errors and failures.

Centres should not even need a disclaimer. It should be common sense that climbing is a dangerous sport and that climbing centres are also dangerous. If you need to be told there is a risk then quite frankly you have issues. It really isn’t difficult to see.
r0x0r.wolfo - on 17 Mar 2012
In reply to graeme jackson:
> (In reply to Double Knee Bar)
> >> I don't really have any qualms with people that work for HBOS.
>
> Just to demonstrate how the press constantly get things wrong, no-one works for HBOS any more, not even me. We're all Lloyds banking group employees.

> As an employee of HBOS I take exception to that remark and hope to meet you in a dark alleyway some day.

You tell them!
Cliff Hanger - on 17 Mar 2012
In reply to Jackwd:


Many thanks for all the words of support. I could answer all the questions raised on the various threads, but in lieu of a decision being made to apply for appeal its probably not wise for us to join the fray! However the articles published in the media are not 100% accurate. The reporter was only there for the verdict and has appeared to speculate on certain matters.

What I can say is accidents are extremely rare at Craggy so please don't let this incident put you off climbing.
AlH - on 17 Mar 2012
In reply to Tiberius: Do you have link to the judgement please.
a lawyer writes on 17 Mar 2012 - client-82-0-14-82.mcr-bng-012.adsl.virginmedia.net
In reply to Cliff Hanger: Appeal, if your lawyers / insurers want to appeal then they're mad.
tom_in_edinburgh - on 17 Mar 2012
In reply to a lawyer writes:

So basically if you break your ankle and sue a climbing wall you get £12K and the lawyers get £120K. Sounds like a lawyer's idea of justice.

What's more if your rich and break your ankle you far get more compensation that someone who is poor who has the same accident and paid the exact same amount to get in because loss of earnings are taken into account.

Maybe the walls should make bankers and lawyers pay double because they are more litigious than normal folk and if they fall off it will cost a fortune.

I'd say the actual moral of the story is that if the lawyers get involved in your life or business you are stuffed.
ste53 on 18 Mar 2012 - 5ad022c1.bb.sky.com
In reply to a lawyer writes: NOT A LAWYER WRITES - The real moral of the story is the stupid LAW need's changing ! problem solved no £120,000 fee's, no fancy lawyers with stupid wig's making a packet out of this whole JOKE of a country !
ste53 on 18 Mar 2012 - 5ad022c1.bb.sky.com
In reply to tom_in_edinburgh: Well said , i think a good idea would be to screen everyone who wants to climb and if they are a banker or a Lawyer they sould have to pay double to climb , that way when one of them stubs thier toe and moans about it we can just give them thier own money back instead of our's!
p.s if the duke of west minister ever turn's up at your wall's best just not let him in ! he's got £9 billon, god know what his earnings a year are !!
mmmhumous on 18 Mar 2012
In reply to Double Knee Bar:
> Seriously though, expecting £100,000 for breaking your ankle at a climbing wall is a joke.

Agreed, £1-5K compensation (of which she contributes 1/3) seems more appropiate.
Matt Bill Platypus - on 19 Mar 2012
In reply to Jackwd: Since she was at work (by her own admission) why didn't she sue her employer? And wouldn't her employer have insurance for injuries which occur whilst at work? I am pretty sure that mine does. Why does this not cover it?
Anonymous on 19 Mar 2012 - host-92-25-172-42.as13285.net
In reply to Matt Bill Platypus:
> (In reply to Jackwd) Since she was at work (by her own admission) why didn't she sue her employer? And wouldn't her employer have insurance for injuries which occur whilst at work? I am pretty sure that mine does. Why does this not cover it?

2 reasons. 1 the employer probably hasn't been negligent, so she'd lose. 2 the employers insurance policy probably has as a term that the insurer can recover any outlay from a negligent third party so the wall would have to be sued anyway.
fxceltic on 19 Mar 2012
In reply to Jackwd:
the photo in the article makes her look out of shape (she may not be, it might just look that way), is she really "into" running as the article claims, or could that just be a way of increasing the claim for damages?

As another example, if I choose to go skiing at a professionally operated ski resort, and break my right arm (as I have done) am I entitled to sue the resort for damages as nobody there ever mentioned it might be dangerous? Perhaps I could also subsequently spuriously claim to have previously enjoyed masturbation in order to increase potential damages?
The Ex-Engineer - on 19 Mar 2012
In reply to a lawyer writes: Thanks for providing some more detail.

You seem to have confirmed my previous opinion that this was more about a lack of documentation than anything else.
a lawyer writes on 19 Mar 2012 - client-82-0-13-20.mcr-bng-012.adsl.virginmedia.net
In reply to The Ex-Engineer: This wasn't (as far as one can tell from reading a summary of the Judgment) solely about a lack of documented evidence, it was the toxic combination (from the defendant's perspective) of bad policies, a casual approach and poor documentation.
dunc56 - on 19 Mar 2012
In reply to a lawyer writes:
> (In reply to cap'nChino) Indeed, any if we could only extend the same principle to driving, cycling, working on building sites and so on.
>
> Moron.

Keeps you in Porsches tough doesn't it :) As said earlier, the only winner in this case is the legal profession.
a lawyer writes on 19 Mar 2012 - client-82-0-13-20.mcr-bng-012.adsl.virginmedia.net
In reply to dunc56: Yes and those scum who attend A&E and keep doctors in the Volvo XC90's, wan*kers.

Perhaps the winners will also be the users of craggy island as the management might actually start a review that will ensure that their policies and processes are adequate to mitigate the blindingly obvious risks?

As per costs, if insurers (defendant's) fight cases which should settle then they can, absent a good protective part 36 offer, expect to be hammered on costs.

Despite what you might read in the lay (moron) press there's actually very little money in insurance litigation.

Ander on 19 Mar 2012
In reply to mux:
> (In reply to Jackwd)... I don’t remember the banks giving me a briefing about the risks they took with our money …but I still have to pay the price.

Beautiful
tommo1664 - on 19 Mar 2012
In reply to Graeme Alderson: I attended the CWIF last week and after narrowly missing out on qualification (100ish points short) I was approached to help with the brushing on finals day. I'm now suffering from "brushes wrist" Is that worth £100k?...... I also have a bad neck as a result of Percy's hair obstructing my view of Shauna. Now granted I don't know much about the law but I'm thinking big out of court settlement!
ads.ukclimbing.com
Andy Mountains - on 19 Mar 2012
In reply to mux:
>
>

> I don’t remember the banks giving me a briefing about the risks they took with our money …but I still have to pay the price.
>

I'm lovin this too!

pebbles - on 19 Mar 2012
In reply to Ander: "She had the impression that the bouldering wall was almost like a "play" session to cool down from the rigours of the 40-foot wall, she told the court, disputing the instructors' claims that she was specifically warned not to jump off. "

so her expensive management skills don't include listening properly then!
Mark Treeby - on 19 Mar 2012
In reply to Jackwd: personally I blame the lawyers and courts they don't live in the real world and get paid WAY to much money. Once we've finished with the bankers lets take a long look at them.
cap'nChino - on 19 Mar 2012
In reply to a lawyer writes:
> (In reply to cap'nChino) Indeed, any if we could only extend the same principle to driving, cycling, working on building sites and so on.
>
> Moron.

You cannot compare those sectors to an indoor climbing wall as it is an entirely different situation. If someone drives into you then I don't take too much issue with getting compensation (through insurance) for repairs and perhaps any genuine loss of earnings from a genuine injury.

But that is very different from a woman jumping from a height and being stupid enough not to realise the risks, then claiming damages when it goes t1ts up.

Out of interest are you a climber?
cap'nChino - on 19 Mar 2012
In reply to a lawyer writes:

At this point I suspect a troll.

> Perhaps the winners will also be the users of craggy island as the management might actually start a review that will ensure that their policies and processes are adequate to mitigate the blindingly obvious risks?

Forgive me if I have misinterpreted what you are saying

But why should they have to mitigate a risk which is so blindingly obvious?

If it is so bloody obvious then nothing needs saying or mitigating, surely?
Andy Mountains - on 19 Mar 2012
In reply to Mark Treeby:
> (In reply to Jackwd) personally I blame the lawyers and courts they don't live in the real world and get paid WAY to much money. Once we've finished with the bankers lets take a long look at them.

Seconded! Another fine comment.

stuart.a.adams - on 19 Mar 2012
If this woman has one shred of dignity left then she should donate her settlement to the Beacon of Hope project featured on the UKC homepage today!
cap'nChino - on 19 Mar 2012
In reply to Jackwd: Can anyone explain to me what the gruelling session on a 40 foot wall means. Was the instructor forcing her up 8a's or something? Makes it sound like she was on a Para's entrance course.
Man on a mission - on 19 Mar 2012
In reply to cap'nChino:

Hey the truth hurts sometimes, the lawyers and their client are laughing now.

Find a good slimey lawyer and they will find a way, and yes I can compare any which way, a lawyer will as well, and yes I am a climber and if I fall its my fault.

Now go and get a life...

cap'nChino - on 19 Mar 2012
In reply to Man on a mission:

Your Honour. I rest my case.

Court Adjourned
Goucho on 19 Mar 2012
In reply to Andy Mountains: To quote Billy Graham....

'Lets kill all the Lawyers, lets kill em tonight!"

Or......

what do you call 100 Lawyers at the bottom of the ocean?




A start!
valentinesbabe - on 19 Mar 2012
In reply to Jackwd:
Regardless of all the ins and outs of the legalities and the compensation I would just like to say that I visited Craggy Island for the first time just recently. I was on a visit "Darn Sarf" and a friend who had just started climbing there took us along. I was impressed by the way that we were assessed when we arrived on our competency on putting on a harness, tying an appropriate knot and also our ability to belay before we were allowed to enter the climbing area, a far more thorough assessment than I've undergone at any of the other three walls I use. Perhaps this is a direct result of the situation now being discussed, I don't know. In the bouldering area there was an obviously situated BMC poster about down climbing rather than having an uncontrolled fall and the reminder that the mats do not stop you from hurting yourself. I find it difficult to understand what else the company are supposed to do to limit exposure to risk and would like to applaud Craggy Island on what I personally found to be a professionally run and excellent facility.
gethin_allen on 19 Mar 2012
In reply to Jackwd:
Is everyone ready to have personal accident no win no fee reps (most aren't legally trained in the formal sense) harassing you outside of your local wall; have you been involved in an accident sir/maddam?

what a disaster for common sense, I can only see this putting insurance prices up and making access to climbing walls more difficult.
digby - on 19 Mar 2012
In reply to Howard J:
> (In reply to Jackwd) I don't think it's surprising that a non-climber who's gone to a wall for a bit of fun will assume that she'll be safe there, especially where she's encouraged to climb without ropes. If there are no ropes, surely it must be safe to fall off? And if it's safe to fall off, then it will be safe to jump off, won't it?
>
> The general media often write about indoor climbing and give the impression that it's a safe environment. A non-climber seeing those big comfy mats is likely to gain the impression that they're safe and it's entirely OK to fall or jump onto them. And you do see experienced climbers falling and even jumping from bouldering walls onto the mats.
>
> Slagging the woman off for not using her common sense is missing the point. She's in an unfamiliar artificial environment where people who know more about it than her have given the impression that, despite what her common sense tells her, she'll be safe. She's entitled to suspend her common sense and rely on the experts. So it comes down to what the experts did to make her realise that actually it isn't safe. In this case the court has ruled they didn't do enough.

You're wasting your time being sensible on this thread, it's brought out the rabid contingent whose opinions the oft quoted sensible 6 year old would find incontinent.
Actually, if 6 year olds are that sensible why are they running around underneath me when I'm climbing? If they are so mature they should be out earning a living.
agolay - on 19 Mar 2012
Surely there no way she'd get any where near £100K i would expect it'll end up at under £10K, my mrs was injured in not too disimilar circumstances and was set to receive 5-6K despite needing surgery
cap'nChino - on 19 Mar 2012
In reply to a lawyer writes: Sorry but as stated before. Case Adjourned.

I feel this matter has been settle both in the court of law and the court of UKC.

I have nothing more to say you're Honor.
winhill - on 19 Mar 2012
In reply to a lawyer writes:
> (In reply to a lawyer writes) Obviously that should read; 'what is this, the annual moron's day out'?

Damn those fat fingers!

If the outcome was evidence based, surely the wall can appeal that the evidence was incorrect? Especially viz warnings and briefings given?
lanc23 - on 19 Mar 2012
Where have I heard stories like this before...America?? I know I'm gerealising, but I really don't want to have a sue'ing culture! :@
Psychlane - on 19 Mar 2012
You've got to hope she doesn't win... can you imagine the health and safety nightmare at your local wall if she does? ... She's a lawyer so I'm guessing she thinks she can but my understanding is that if people know the risks and you've done everything reasonable to ameliorate them then the whole s%*! happens law comes into play.
tony on 19 Mar 2012
In reply to Psychlane:
> You've got to hope she doesn't win...

She's already won the right to damages. What's yet to be decided is the size of the damages.
tom_in_edinburgh - on 19 Mar 2012
In reply to lanc23:

I was at a couple of walls in the US last month and the impression I got was their focus was a particularly rabid disclaimer form which got them off the hook for anything and everything plus a formal belay test. After that they were pretty relaxed. The US has a culture of personal responsibility and you can probably sign your right to sue away if you choose to.

In one US wall you had to sign the disclaimer form on a PC (with a pen pad attached) so they could get you to click 'yes' individually against all the different parts. A system like that could also show standard warnings or videos and even video the person signing to provide absolutely bullet proof evidence.
Graeme Alderson on 19 Mar 2012
In reply to tom_in_edinburgh: In the States they changed the law so that you can disclaim negligence. However you disclaim all negligence on the part of the operator meaning that if the climbing wall falls on top of you then tough.

xusa on 19 Mar 2012
I think we humans are getting more and more stupid thanks to those things, when i was a kid and i use to fall and hurt myself my dad would tell me...well you should open your eyes and pay attention of what you are doing! And nowadays nobody seems to open their eyes and pay attention to anything because we are so use to have everything done for us! There are signs everywhere, mind the gap, watch out with this, careful with that.. come on! And if you do have an accident like this woman, or fall on the street or whatever you can always blame someone and get some kind of benefit instead of thinking ohhh what an idiot i should have paid attention!! is just ridiculous!
Tiberius - on 19 Mar 2012
In reply to xusa:
> ...And nowadays nobody seems to open their eyes and pay attention to anything because we are so use to have everything done for us!

Before making such claims, I think you should look at real statistics relating to accidents over the past say 50 years. There has been a massive reduction.
lumberjock - on 19 Mar 2012
In reply to Jackwd: Its a stroke of luck that she didn@t get whiplash when she landed. What happened to people taking responsibility for their own actions? This culture is reflected already with other sports, but I hadn't heard of it in climbing circles up until now. The vultures are circling..... How long before crags are closed to the public for litigation reasons?
tony on 19 Mar 2012
In reply to lumberjock:
> How long before crags are closed to the public for litigation reasons?

Why would that happen?
lumberjock - on 19 Mar 2012
In reply to Goucho: The ocean is no use : did you know that sharks won't eat them ....out of professional courtesy.
xusa on 19 Mar 2012
In reply to Tiberius: Regardless estatistics, people need to open their eyes and be responsible for their acts a bit more obviously there is a limit..
aware - on 19 Mar 2012
In reply to Jackwd: I fell while climbing in the alps broke my arm and neck. Who do I sue? Noone because that is the nature of the sport. She should be banned from all indoor climbing walls
johnl - on 19 Mar 2012
In reply to tony: I believe that happened for a time at Harborough rocks.
Graeme Alderson on 19 Mar 2012
In reply to tony: Perhaps because some land owners will be as ignorant of the law as some UKC users.
Garron - on 19 Mar 2012
Climbing centres have commercialised climbing to the extent that people that would not normally climb may find themselves in team building exercises that involves climbing. This means that climbing centres will have to go to extreme lengths to reduce the risk to these people and occasionally pay lawsuits.

If an experienced climber were to sue, under these same conditions, they should be banned from all climbing gyms.
tdan0504 - on 20 Mar 2012
What then is the point of climbing centres getting people to sign disclaimers if the Courts are going to completely disregard them? £100k? Seems bankers greed extends to their personal life as well as their professional one. Five years ago I got severely mangled by an old woman in a Mercedes whilst mountain biking. It took over a year of treatment and surgery to repair my hand and wrist, I got £5k for that. A mere broken ankle is insignificant by comparison.
Anonymous on 20 Mar 2012 - 2.25.134.31 whois?
>
> I'd say the actual moral of the story is that if the lawyers get involved in your life or business you are stuffed.

LAWYER: A job in which 97% of those practicing it somehow manage to give the entire profession a bad name!
(From: The Official Dictionary of Sarcasm) LOL!
Neil Williams - on 20 Mar 2012
In reply to tdan0504:

Did you recover fully, or nearly fully?

I have a feeling we don't have the full information on the injury in this case, because the Press articles seem to suggest she won't - so perhaps not a simple broken ankle?

That said... I have a permanent knee injury caused by me being knocked off my bike by a car, about 7-8 years ago. Unfortunately, it was completely my fault, so I can't blame anyone else. But if it wasn't my fault and I could, I don't think I'd be wanting money for it. It hasn't cost me anything, it's just annoying. Money can't put it right, so why?

If, OTOH, we had a private medical system and it was reasonably fixable, I can see why I might want to claim the cost of treatment to fix it. But that's different.

As for consequential loss (e.g. lost earnings), I think there should be a limit on that with people having to insure against it themselves above that limit. Otherwise, it could lead to questions like "What is your expected career and earnings" on forms as companies seek to limit exposure.

Neil
Mark Reeves - on 20 Mar 2012
To All: I think people should read the Telegraph article, as well as the UKC report. There are several key facts missing in the UKC report, this person wasn't a 'climber', she was on a taster session by the account made in the telegraph, as such that slightly changes the premise of why Craggy Island were sued.

Inappropriate supervision of a novice climber, opened them up to being sued. Not simply an experienced climber taking a tumble.
M0nkey - on 20 Mar 2012
In reply to Jackwd:

Since when was it prohibited to jump onto bouldering pads? I can't think of anyone who climbs at my wall who doesn't do it? Of course there is a risk associated with it, but who in their right mind wouldn't appreciate the nature of the risk.

One question that you might ask is where was her spotter. That might have been a fairer basis for the decision. I'll be interested to see if that features in the decision.

tony on 20 Mar 2012
In reply to M0nkey:
> (In reply to Jackwd)
>
> Since when was it prohibited to jump onto bouldering pads? I can't think of anyone who climbs at my wall who doesn't do it? Of course there is a risk associated with it, but who in their right mind wouldn't appreciate the nature of the risk.

Someone who'd never been to a climbing wall before, had no experience of falling or jumping onto a mat, who was in a very new environment undergoing a new experience?
>
> One question that you might ask is where was her spotter. That might have been a fairer basis for the decision. I'll be interested to see if that features in the decision.

A spotter? You are joking, right?

Lew13 - on 20 Mar 2012
She should be banned from climbing .... full stop
chalk bunny - on 20 Mar 2012
In reply to Jackwd: It is a shame that this had to happen, surely an adult can make a risk assessment; that the bouldering mat will not absorb all of the impact due to the material and depth of the mat.
tommy - on 20 Mar 2012
In reply to Jackwd: Well yes the world has gone mad; I am a part-time climbing wall instructor so as part of the introduction to the bouldering section I will warn our clients not to jump off the wall. At the same time I will check their footwear to ensure that the laces have been tied properly and that they have a clean hankie in their pocket! Oh beam me up Scotty!
Mark Reeves - on 20 Mar 2012
In reply to a lawyer writes: Thanks for your contributions, they have been great, and very informative. Is there a place you can go on the wen to get all the court details, etc... Or is it just for lawyer types?

Email me if you don't want to put it on this forum.
RupertD - on 21 Mar 2012
In reply to Mark Reeves:

Various websites publish the judgments when they become available. Some are free, some are subscription only. The best free resource is www.bailii.org. The full judgement in this case hasn't been published yet. The judgment will detail the court, the judge(s), the parties and their representatives as well as a transcript of the judgment its self.
Trefo - on 22 Mar 2012
In reply to Jackwd:

As a former outdoor instructor, now a lawyer, I think that this is an entirely sensible outcome. Judges are, on the whole, extremely intelligent people who interpret law within a framework of legal precedents. This is supplemented by the Judicial Studies Board Guidelines for personal injury compensation. You will all be surprised to hear that JSB guidelines are not that generous when it comes to awarding compensation for personal injury. Britain is not a highly litigious country and I suspect, without hearing the facts, that when the Judge says that Craggy Island breached their duty to instruct people how to use the wall correctly that is exactly what they did. Members of the public require instruction, that is what instructors are there for.

Most importantly Judges are aware that imposing a duty on members of the public is unfair, they may suffer serious loss because they can't work or do everyday activities. It is much more sensible to pass the loss onto an insurance company who will not bat an eyelid at paying this claim.

If you want to direct your anger at anyone, direct it at the personal injury lawyers, not the legal system. Personal injury lawyers, one of which I am not, charge success fees, which can be as much as 100% of the original claim, this uplift is designed to insulate them against loss when they do lose and have to pay the other side's recoverable costs. Fear not...this system is being changed-soon, at some point, sometime, in the future, not before I've made more money!.......where's my Aston Martin


Please spare a thought for those that do legal aid work (crime and family)...joe public thinks that lawyers are well paid-the truth is that crime doesn't pay and people are not getting the representation they need because publicly funded lawyers can't afford to survive.
RupertD - on 22 Mar 2012
In reply to Trefo:
> (In reply to Jackwd)
>
> If you want to direct your anger at anyone, direct it at the personal injury lawyers, not the legal system. Personal injury lawyers, one of which I am not, charge success fees, which can be as much as 100% of the original claim, this uplift is designed to insulate them against loss when they do lose and have to pay the other side's recoverable costs. Fear not...this system is being changed-soon, at some point, sometime, in the future, not before I've made more money!......

Removing CFAs will certainly reduce the amount that personal injury lawyers earn, but CFAs are not just used in injury work. Once they go you will just have to hope that if you ever need a lawyer that you either have legal expenses insurance or that you have a bomb proof case or you have very deep pockets. No legal aid and no meaningful CFAs mean that many people may not be able to get any legal representation at all.
gazza6642 - on 23 Mar 2012
In reply to Jackwd: My wife broke her arm jumping down about 4 feet from the wall at Craggy2. She stumbled on the sloping mat and fell back on to a hold. The last thing on her mind was claiming any sort of compensation. She knew and accepted the risks involved. On the other hand, it was 2 weeks before Christmas and I had to undertake all the tasks such as present wrapping, cooking dinner and even straightening her hair for social occasions. Perhaps I should have sued!!
kurosan - on 24 Mar 2012
In reply to Jackwd:

I was absolutely appauled to read about this. I fell of a bouldering wall a few years ago now and completely shattered my elbow, I came very close to loosing my arm. the furthest thing from my mind was legal action, it was my fault I fell and I broke my arm. everyone who participates in climbing should realise what they are doing is dangerous. I cannot beleive the court ruled on her side. this is another example of courts interviening in matters they do not fully understand!!
Tiberius - on 24 Mar 2012
In reply to Jackwd:

For those of you who wish evil on this woman, I mentioned this thread to a regular partner of mine at Craggy and she told me she was actually here when this happened...apparently this woman did quite a lot of screaming and seemed to be in considerable pain.

fred99 - on 25 Mar 2012
In reply to Tiberius:

Some people scream for the tiniest item - say a splinter.
Others control themselves in such situations.

Plus as a first aider I've been told that those not making noise are the ones you sould worry about if you have more than one casualty.

Last weekend Muamba didn't make any noise, but was in a serious stuation, but how many other players at other matches screamed and rolled around for absolutely nothing except to make out to the Referee that they wanted their opponent sent off.

Noise and real injury are not the same thing. Referees (and Judges) can be conned.
barbe1 - on 26 Mar 2012
In reply to Jackwd:

I HATE compensation culture. Why do we continually reward stupidity? This is pretty disgusting really.
BigHell on 26 Mar 2012
In reply to Jackwd:


I once jumped down on to the crash mat and stupidly jarred my right elbow which eventually needed surgery I didn't climb again for around six months.
Did I claim compensation "NO" who would I have claimed from, it was my own stupid fault. Unfortunately we live in world of claim culture where people like this woman cant take responsibility for their own actions .
TheDrunkenBakers - on 26 Mar 2012
In reply to The Ex-Engineer:
> (In reply to various) Putting my super cynical hat on, I have to say what does Craggy Island expect to happen when it uses an extreme sport training facility to run corporate team building exercises...
>
> It is obvious to anyone with a knowledge of climbing that bouldering is a relatively high risk activity to use for 'team building'. I would not go as far as to suggest that it is inappropriate, but even the most cursory risk assessment would have identified the bouldering as having a much higher risk of injury than top-roping or other activities the group in question partook in.
>
> I would suggest that if climbing walls are venturing outside their core market of people who genuinely want to climb and a few kids birthday parties they should look at how Go Ape run their activities. Their procedures are excessively anal but they are specifically designed with avoiding litigation in mind - and in that regard they work superbly. AFAIK every potential case of litigation against them has stopped dead in its tracks once solicitors have seen the level of documentary evidence the company has relating to every site, every instructor, every group and every individual client.
>
> The specific relevance to this case is that at Go Ape the safety briefs are given verbatim from a script and there is documentary evidence to support when it was delivered to each group.
>
> On the other hand, before I get too many complaints, I must say that I deplore the fact that companies dealing with the general public (or at least the rich middle class) now need to design safety procedures to cope with the potential that events may be contested after the fact. It is a damning indictment of modern Britain. It is also, to be fair to Craggy and their staff, a very depressing way in which to have to view potential customers and is an outlook which is completely alien to most people who are passionate about outdoor pursuits.
>
> That is some ways leads back to my first point, it might just be less unpleasant for everyone involved in climbing if we keep climbing walls for climbers...

Agree with all of this. Sad state of affairs but true. Either way, these companies will be screwed by solicitors, whether sued by claimants or in drafting said protective legal procedures in the first place; and in keeping them updated as legislation and precedents change.

This woman, in my opinion, acted carelessly and without due care and shouldnt have claimed resulting from her own lack of ability and sense. The company was clearly inexperienced or naive, or both in not protecting itself through its procedures or having substandard legal protection.
Neil Williams - on 26 Mar 2012
In reply to TheDrunkenBakers:

"The specific relevance to this case is that at Go Ape the safety briefs are given verbatim from a script and there is documentary evidence to support when it was delivered to each group."

Doesn't prevent muppetry, though. I once screwed up and ended up clipped on by only one line while on Go Ape. Yes, that proves the resilience of the system, but still. I was actually quite surprised that they used a clip yourself in system because of the potential for mistakes.

Had I fallen off would I have sued? No, my own muppetry, as I was told how to do it properly. But maybe that's why more recent developments of this type tend to use continuous belays...

Neil
Kieran_John - on 26 Mar 2012
Be fair, how are people to know that the mattress isn't magic and can't prevent daft people from injuring themselves?

From a legal standpoint, don't you have to sign a document when entering pretty much every climbing wall that essentially says "climbing is dangerous, you might hurt or kill yourself"? I would have thought that alone would have been enough to cover a 5 foot jump.
Andy Cloquet - on 30 Mar 2012
Like with many other comments, I find this ruling lunacy at its worst!

On two separate sessions, I staved a thumb and couldn't teach any outdoor pursuit activity for days after each of the injuries. I wasn't entitled nor did I bother to claim any injury compensation. The injuries were an accepted hazard of my work and participation in the sport.

This claimant should recover her moral conscience and donate her 'winnings' to a charity looking to support the involvement of those less able to participate on their own!
.....well, that's off my chest.
In reply to Jackwd:
zigzag - on 02 Apr 2012
In reply to Jackwd: I'm afraid common sense goes out the window once £ signs start to be mentioned, if the woman had any decency she'd would have put it down to her own bad judgment.
A bit sad really and a sign of the greed prevelant in this day and age
frank hill - on 03 Apr 2012
OK simple.
Do what a good friend of mine did in the US when he owned a paragliding company, show every client that YOU DO NOT HAVE insurance and that you DO NOT OWN anything of value consequently they could lock you up but it would get rid of these leeching insurance company claims.
Interestingly I note that the person in question is associated with an insurance business, funnily enough someone I know is also going through a not dissimilar claim with a person ALSO employed in the insurance industry.
lincoln.3 on 03 Apr 2012
In reply to Jackwd: I was in a Health & Safety training course last week and apparently a 17 year old apprentice won the right to claim after hitting HIMSELF with a hammer on the thumb..... The court said he had not had sufficient training! And there is the problem.... the courts saying this is OK!!!
Oceanrower - on 03 Apr 2012
In reply to lincoln.3: I would be very wary of believing most of the examples they give you on these courses unless they provide referrences!
Neil Williams - on 04 Apr 2012
In reply to frank hill:

I would think it's a bit difficult, other than by way of dodgy financial manoeuvring, to run an indoor climbing wall without having any assets at all.

Neil
ads.ukclimbing.com
jimslade - on 05 Apr 2012
In reply to Jackwd:
The problem, as stated by one of the other respondents, is that the wall wasn't being used by climbers, but by a bunch of middle-aged people, undertaking a corporate team-building exercise. There's an awful lot wrong with corporate team-building exercises in and of themselves. And middle-age isn't the ideal time to start pushing your body or reflexes in dangerous undertakings. Had she jumped off the garden wall at home and broken her ankle, she'd have had no-one to sue but herself.
Ultimately, however, it's the growth in climbing wall provision that's led to this situation. If you turn a free-wheeling, 'underground' minority sport into a business, you'll end up with it being treated like any other business. Welcome to the business world.
RunningMan - on 13 Apr 2012
balmybaldwin - on 13 Apr 2012
In reply to RunningMan:

Interesting, just need them to appeal then really and hope another Judge uses the precedents set out in the article
roscoe - on 15 Apr 2012
In reply to Jackwd: I do agree with your comment. However, the bone of contention was that the lady in question had an excellent briefing on the top-roping phase of what was apparently a team building day for bankers. Yet she claimed that she was not briefed on the dangers of bouldering. I find that strange but not beyond the realms of belief unfortunately. I've been at certain walls where I've been bouldering and hoards of kids come charging onto the mat underneath you after a top-roping session. So if any of those kids were directly underneath you and you were just about to jump off because you were pumped you would have been forced to make a less safer landing than you would have intended to avoid some runaway kid. A snapped ankle would then have been a distinct possibility. Also I've seen some instructors switch off when the top roping is done and they almost treat the bouldering session as a warm-down postlead climb/top rope session for their clients. When their clients are probably fatigued and haven't the experience to realise they're more likely to hurt themselves bouldering than top-roping. Yes climbing is a risk sport and climbers accept that. However bankers are not climbers and team building exercises should be risk-free I'm afraid.
Neil Williams - on 16 Apr 2012
In reply to roscoe:

"However bankers are not climbers and team building exercises should be risk-free I'm afraid."

No climbing is risk-free. If that is genuinely the requirement, don't choose climbing. And for that matter don't travel to your day in a risk-free padded cell by road, as that's rather more dangerous than a top-roping session.

I see your point about bouldering safety and I would say on the overall topic I am unsure of my opinion. But your statement above is utter nonsense.

Neil
JoshOvki on 16 Apr 2012
In reply to Neil Williams:

Yes it isn't risk free, and that is why walls have insurance.
Mike Stretford - on 16 Apr 2012
In reply to Neil Williams: Superivsed top roping is very low risk, and as such is a suitable activity for work team building. My parents have done it on a cruise. It's true to say it is not risk free, but also pedantic as we all know what he means.

Bouldering is an activity with significant risk. Especially for beginners who are already knackerd from doing something new. When the management accepted this booking little alarm bells should have gone off, and instuctions not to let them on the bouldering wall issued.

It's a shame the buisness will suffer, but some good will come out if walls put more thought into what they do with beginners at the end of a taster session.

winhill - on 16 Apr 2012
In reply to roscoe:
> (In reply to Jackwd) When their clients are probably fatigued and haven't the experience to realise they're more likely to hurt themselves bouldering than top-roping. Yes climbing is a risk sport and climbers accept that. However bankers are not climbers and team building exercises should be risk-free I'm afraid.

A number of canards here, I think.

The excellence of the top rope briefing has been exaggerated to try to diminish the instruction given for bouldering, to make it seem less adequate.

What experience do you need to know that jumping down four feet is hazardous? Would you expect someone in their 40s to have the requisite experience?

I've had to endure a few team building exercises, none of which have been entirely risk-free, it's not a necessary condition.
winhill - on 16 Apr 2012
In reply to Papillon:
> (In reply to Neil Williams)

> Bouldering is an activity with significant risk. Especially for beginners who are already knackerd from doing something new. When the management accepted this booking little alarm bells should have gone off, and instuctions not to let them on the bouldering wall issued.

Alarm bells? Have often do you think walls offer this type of activity? That's a lot of bells.

What is the significant risk? Do you mean the number of injurious accidents per hour? Or the objective possibility of injury?
Tiberius - on 16 Apr 2012
In reply to winhill:
> What experience do you need to know that jumping down four feet is hazardous? Would you expect someone in their 40s to have the requisite experience?

tbh I was a reasonably experience climber in my late 40's before I knew that there were a lot more injuries on the bouldering wall than the main walls (ok, I don't boulder much...like this woman).
winhill - on 16 Apr 2012
In reply to Tiberius:
> (In reply to winhill)
> [What experience do you need to know that jumping down four feet is hazardous? Would you expect someone in their 40s to have the requisite experience?]
>
> tbh I was a reasonably experience climber in my late 40's before I knew that there were a lot more injuries on the bouldering wall than the main walls (ok, I don't boulder much...like this woman).

Do you think she needs to know the ratios before she climbs? Is this something walls need to put into their briefings?
Mike Stretford - on 16 Apr 2012
In reply to winhill:
> (In reply to Tiberius)
> [...]
>
> Do you think she needs to know the ratios before she climbs? Is this something walls need to put into their briefings?

No, it's not that complicated. Just don't let tired beginers on the bouldering wall.
Frogger - on 16 Apr 2012
In reply to Papillon:
> No, it's not that complicated. Just don't let tired beginers on the bouldering wall.




That's the problem, though, isn't it?

Too tired? Too much of a beginner? How do you measure these in order to evaluate someone's risk of an accident? The answer is, you can't.

You have to accept that climbing has inherent risks and injuries happen at all levels - beginners and experienced climbers alike.






Mike Stretford - on 16 Apr 2012
In reply to Frogger:
> (In reply to Papillon)
> [...]
>
>
>
>
> Too tired? Too much of a beginner? How do you measure these in order to evaluate someone's risk of an accident? The answer is, you can't.
>

You can, it's not rocket science. Begginers on a taster session, limit them to the top ropes. Seperate induction for bouldering.

Frogger - on 16 Apr 2012
In reply to Papillon:


So was it the case that this woman was let on the bouldering wall without any induction at all?
Mike Stretford - on 16 Apr 2012
In reply to Frogger: I don't know. The wall claimed she had, she said they hadn't and the judge believed her (according to reports I've read)... maybe they'll win that on appeal.

A seperate bouldering induction session on another day would eliminate any doubt, without compromising the activity.

Frogger - on 16 Apr 2012
In reply to Papillon:
> A seperate bouldering induction session on another day would eliminate any doubt, without compromising the activity.

I really hope it would.

What is concerning is that, as has been reported, this woman did sign the participation form. This must have included basic instructions around not walking under other boulderers and not jumping down etc. Yet more importantly, it is an agreement that climbers - beginners or experienced - must consciously take personal responsibility for their actions entirely, or they do not climb.

The point is that, even if this woman had have had an induction, if she had injured herself by falling (rather than jumping), I expect that she would still have sued. If a hold had spun and she broke a finger, she still would have sued. etc

But it's not just about the litigation. That participation statement exists because climbers must agree to acting in a responsible and careful manner in order to cut the risks of injury to other climbers.

If a wall cannot rely on this legal protection, I fear that the climbing wall industry could very well be jeopardised by an increasing number of claims. That's because the risks of injury remain regardless of what paperwork and warnings you put in place, and wherever there is an injury, there is a lawyer willing to try for compensation.

Mike Stretford - on 16 Apr 2012
In reply to Frogger:
> (In reply to Papillon)
> [...]
>
> I really hope it would.
>
> What is concerning is that, as has been reported, this woman did sign the participation form.

Where did you read that? She would certainly not have signed the same form we, as climbers would have. She was paying for a supervised climbing taster session. She would not be allowed to use the wall unsupervised.

I don't know if the BMC Participation Statement is on the form for taster sessions... it's a waste of ink if it is.
Tiberius - on 16 Apr 2012
In reply to winhill:
> Do you think she needs to know the ratios before she climbs? Is this something walls need to put into their briefings?

Ratios's no, but I think the impression needs to be given that the bouldering area is not a playpen.

The bouldering area is not a beginners area in my view, certainly not an area that non-climbers, and people who have probably had some peer pressure put on them to attend, should be let lose in. Not just for their safety, but for mine as well if I happen to be beneath them.
Tiberius - on 16 Apr 2012
In reply to Frogger:
> That's the problem, though, isn't it?
>
> Too tired? Too much of a beginner? How do you measure these in order to evaluate someone's risk of an accident? The answer is, you can't.

Sorry, don't agree with that at all. A bunch of non-climbers on a 'team building' exercise? Probably there under peer pressure from their team leader/boss. This is not a borderline case and really, in this case the answer is 'you can'.
Tiberius - on 16 Apr 2012
In reply to Frogger:
> What is concerning is that, as has been reported, this woman did sign the participation form.

I've not seen this reported.

> This must have included basic instructions around not walking under other boulderers and not jumping down etc.

The judgement is available, in fact I think it's been posted on here, or a link to it at least. From memory the judge clearly stated in his summary that the wall broke their own procedures here.


> ...it is an agreement that climbers - beginners or experienced

This woman was NOT a climber. She was there on a 'team building' exercise. tbh we're covering ground that was covered on this thread a long time ago.

> ...I expect that she would still have sued. If a hold had spun and she broke a finger, she still would have sued. etc

I'm not sure that speculation is of any real help here. I would have thought a better objective would be to put in place a set of procedures that ensure the wall is not open to such litigation again.

> If a wall cannot rely on this legal protection

The crucial point here, is not that the woman was injured, but that the wall did not follow their own procedures (according to the case summary). Speculating about scenarios that are not particular to this case don't really help.
Neil Williams - on 16 Apr 2012
In reply to Tiberius:

Correct to a point. If you're underneath someone, *you* need to move so you aren't, as it's easier for you to do that than for them to avoid being above you.

Neil
Frogger - on 16 Apr 2012
In reply to Tiberius:
> From memory the judge clearly stated in his summary that the wall broke their own procedures here.


If that's true then I guess the judgement is well justified! Apologies!


My post was really about walls being at risk of more claims, but if you're saying that they would have been protected had they followed their own procedures, then I'm satisfied there's nothing to worry about.

Carry on!
Frogger - on 16 Apr 2012
In reply to Tiberius:
> I'm not sure that speculation is of any real help here.


It could be if it helps tighten up the legal defences of freelance supervisors and climbing walls!


Think about the big picture, Tiberius!!
kjdicken on 16 Apr 2012 - client-80-1-162-164.bsh-bng-011.adsl.virginmedia.net
In reply to Jackwd: On BBC radio 4 last week there was a H&S Myth Busters which was trying to say that health and safty hadn't gone mad.

I think I learnt about gravity in primary school, and I think I learnt that if you fall, you hurt, before nursary school.

I mean has the world really become so virtual that people have lost the ability to assess risk?
Eamon on 19 Apr 2012 - 089-100-093109.ntlworld.ie
I reckon about 5 or 6 steps from the bottom of any stairs there should big signs telling people not to jump
Dahinchl - on 20 Apr 2012
In reply to Jackwd: I think her leg has gone lame, we should treat her like a horse and get the shotgun...
Neil Williams - on 20 Apr 2012
In reply to Eamon:

That would stuff me when I am in a hurry on the Tube, then... :)

Neil
m gibbs on 04 May 2012 - cpc9-stav15-2-0-cust578.aztw.cable.virginmedia.com
In reply to The Ex-Engineer:
> (In reply to various) Putting my super cynical hat on, I have to say what does Craggy Island expect to happen when it uses an extreme sport training facility to run corporate team building exercises...
>
> It is obvious to anyone with a knowledge of climbing that bouldering is a relatively high risk activity to use for 'team building'. I would not go as far as to suggest that it is inappropriate, but even the most cursory risk assessment would have identified the bouldering as having a much higher risk of injury than top-roping or other activities the group in question partook in.
>
> I would suggest that if climbing walls are venturing outside their core market of people who genuinely want to climb and a few kids birthday parties they should look at how Go Ape run their activities. Their procedures are excessively anal but they are specifically designed with avoiding litigation in mind - and in that regard they work superbly. AFAIK every potential case of litigation against them has stopped dead in its tracks once solicitors have seen the level of documentary evidence the company has relating to every site, every instructor, every group and every individual client.
>
> The specific relevance to this case is that at Go Ape the safety briefs are given verbatim from a script and there is documentary evidence to support when it was delivered to each group.
>
> On the other hand, before I get too many complaints, I must say that I deplore the fact that companies dealing with the general public (or at least the rich middle class) now need to design safety procedures to cope with the potential that events may be contested after the fact. It is a damning indictment of modern Britain. It is also, to be fair to Craggy and their staff, a very depressing way in which to have to view potential customers and is an outlook which is completely alien to most people who are passionate about outdoor pursuits.
>
> That is some ways leads back to my first point, it might just be less unpleasant for everyone involved in climbing if we keep climbing walls for climbers...

In my view you have the position spot on. Whilst its all a bit of a hassle and a joke to some the very serious intention is to stop people getting hurt. If you need to treat them like children to achieve that then you need to do that. In this case whatever was said it either wasn't checked that she was listening or it wasn't sufficient to avoid her getting hurt so the centre cannot have done it properly. Simple stuff. Not fun or glamorous and tragic that its necessary for someone to stand there and if necessary say to customers - you know what you are not listening so you can't use the wall, but if thats what it needs I will back them every day. I don't see it that it makes much difference whether she jumped off because she needed to or fell off.
m gibbs on 04 May 2012 - cpc9-stav15-2-0-cust578.aztw.cable.virginmedia.com
Disclaimers have next to no legal value. All it serves to do is document that there has been some instruction, not that it was appropriate or sufficient.
ads.ukclimbing.com
Lord_ash2000 - on 04 May 2012
In reply to m gibbs: "the very serious intention is to stop people getting hurt."

It is. But I don't think it should be. The whole 'safety first' thing is wrong I think. Safety needs to be up there we don't want everything to be a death trap but I don't think activities and enterprises should be stopped or exposed to huge financial risks simply because 1 in 10,000 might get hurt while doing something.

I think the enjoyment of thousands is not outweighed by the one person who might get hurt. As always it's a judgement as to where to draw the line on accountability etc but I think at the moment that line is in the wrong place.

People need to live in a world where they have to make their own choices about things, and yes there will be some poor kid who gets killed every so often, and every one will moan. But the fact is on a national level people die all the time in all manner of ways, no one cares. No one cares that 1000's are killed on the roads every year because it's a price we pay to get around in cars. No one cares that a few hundred people die falling down stairs, it's the price we pay to have buildings on more than a floor. I think a similar view should be taken with leisure activities too as it's a price we pay to enjoy ourselves without being hindered.

When we climb outside we can take whatever risks we want, if you want to on sight a hard route or do some sketchy trad close to your limit no one will stop you. You decide if you put the extra gear in or back up your anchors etc. But not everyone can go on risky adventures on their own, many people like courses or to be guided, this is fair enough but they shouldn't expect to be immune to the dangers.
unknownclimber6 - on 17 May 2012
i think this is totaly ridiculous!

so because she did not do the right thing a climbing centre and all its members are suffering for it? because depending on the pay out its possible the centre may be forced to close!

and i am sure a qualified instructor leading a group of inexperienced climbers on a ''team building exercise'' would run through the ''potential'' hazards of what may happen when bouldering and since it was ''Team building'' im am positive that spotting would have been a big part of it because that a trusting role to play, so where was the spotters? but even if he/she did not explain would she jump off a brick wall without thinking of the personal danger to herself? its possible that jumping of anything at 5ft could break bones! THATS JUST COMMON SENSE!!!

i also find it disgusting that this nation is now adopting such and americanised way of doing things, sueing people left right and centre for things that if common sense was used may not have happened!
why cant people just put things down to an accident at times with being greedy and wanting money for everything!!!! :@

aww wait ....... they were BANKERS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Ben_Bullbridge - on 17 May 2012
I totally agree with the above, its completely ridiculous to expect compensation based on your own idiocy. Its bred by the American sub culture of some-one else must be responsible for my stupidity and frankly it makes me sick.

I think we can all agree to that as regular users of climbing walls, we are all made completely and fully aware of the dangers of ignoring correct equipment use and one of the most stressed points is that you should never jump from a boulder problem and never attempt to go beyond your limits rendering you unable to climb down.

isn't it weird how its a 'competitive' banker in her 40's whos used to getting her own way is now slinging her weight about and blaming others after climbing to high beyond her capabilites...............a reflection of the banks themselves perhaps?

either way, poor form
Oceanrower - on 17 May 2012
In reply to Jackwd: Dear God, hasn't this thread died yet? Two months on and still going!
tripehound - on 17 May 2012
In reply to Jackwd:
This all started when solicitors were allowed to advertise in the Thatcher era. Now you cannot go into a Casualty department or watch Tv without being bombarded with "you can claim compensation ads)
GrahamD - on 17 May 2012
In reply to tripehound:

> This all started when solicitors were allowed to advertise in the Thatcher era.

Are you Al Evans ? can I claim my £5 ?

The only way these solicitors can make a living if the judgements of the judiciary go in their favour. If there is a problem (I'm not saying there is), it is with the law not with those who work with it.
toad - on 17 May 2012
In reply to GrahamD: You do know the law is being substantially revised?
GrahamD - on 17 May 2012
In reply to toad:

Hopefully. It has to be able to distinguish between genuine negligence and areas where personal responsibility should be assumed. You can't blame the legal profession from testing the boundries when they aren't clear.
toad - on 17 May 2012
In reply to GrahamD:
> (In reply to toad)
>
> Hopefully. It has to be able to distinguish between genuine negligence and areas where personal responsibility should be assumed. You can't blame the legal profession from testing the boundries when they aren't clear.

I don't. My wife does PI.
Ben_Bullbridge - on 17 May 2012
I wouldn't say its about the law and professionals testing it, i'd say its about morality and individuals being held and holding themselves responsible for their actions, and not simply trying to blame their mistakes on others and using the available laws to claim cash for their own stupidity.

Its a question of should I not could I to be fair, just because its possible to claim a load of cash using the laws we have, does that mean one should do it from a moral view point?
GrahamD - on 18 May 2012
In reply to Coops_Cromford:

I don't like it either, but I don't think its immoral to use the law as it is written and commonly interpreted. My problem is with either the law or general interpretation of it which seems sometimes to err on the side of victime mentality.

In truth, though I don't know whether this is the way we stuff reported and that for every seemingly frivolous claim that gets through, the system in fact chucks out ten others.

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