Does your outdoor recreation brochure have a disclaimer or warn your guest of possible risks?

Do you need to tell your guests they could be hurt, and you are not responsible?

I was walking around in a tourist town on Maui, HI the other day and spotted several brochure racks advertising all sorts of outdoor recreation activities. (Warning, reach for brochures at your own risk; they are guarded by timeshare sales people. “Aloha, where are you from?” in the local language means “I have a time share to sell means,”) I grabbed one out of curiosity and then started looking through all of them. None of them say anything about the risk of the activity. The fact you could be injured or that the business was not responsible was nowhere on any of the brochures.

Try explaining to a timeshare salesman that you want to look at the brochures and not book a trip and not buy a timeshare. Then explain why you are looking at the brochures.  That was very effective in stopping the “pitch.”  I guess the liability warning on brochure talk I can give is effective against time share sellers.

So?

I always think that when you walk into a courtroom, you should be able to say to the jury, they knew before they signed up (paid their money) they could get hurt.  Although not a defense, the statement “I never knew I could get hurt” strikes a chord with juries.

A brochure with a warning on this defeats that argument. So does your website.

On top of that, is there a moral or ethical obligation to let someone know, that there is some risk in your sport, every sport. The smiling faces on the brochures (main where the same faces, by the way) were for marketing. You want people to have fun, but if someone does not….

Am I wrong? Is it OK when reaching for the dollar or the credit card of your guest to allow your brochure to do all the talking? What if you tell them of the risk after they have paid? Is that “fair.”

How is that going to be viewed by the jury? If I were representing the plaintiff, I would project a picture of the plaintiff in the hospital next to the picture on the brochure on the wall.  I would ask the jury what is missing in that picture compared to what occurred to my client.

In the hospital, my client does not look beautiful or happy.

What do you think? Leave a comment.

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By Recreation Law    Rec-law@recreation-law.com      James H. Moss         #Authorrank

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Cyclists! We need to change this. It is legal to change it, it is right to change it.

Organization of the New York City Police Depar...

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We have to get/force/educate law enforcement that cyclists are not just future road kill!

If you ride regularly, other than on a trainer, you’ve probably been scared, brushed or hit on a bike by a vehicle. If you are injured or your bike or other property is damaged, a

nd you call the police/state patrol/sheriff, you are probably ignored, or if they respond, still ignored.

People are starting to take action about the issue of motorists killing or almost killing cyclists. See Tell Maui and HI that you’re not coming until they prove the place is safe and the news article Family Of Killed Cyclist Mathieu Lefevre Sues NYPD For Withholding Information. The horses are hitched; it’s time to get on the band wagon!

This has to stop!

There are several things you must do (yes I’m not suggesting I’m telling you).

Before an incident.

1.     Get a law passed that gives cyclists the right to call law enforcement that makes law enforcement respond.

        The law should say the cops have to show up.

        The law should say the cops have to take a report.

2.     If you are politically active, ask politicians if they support the right of cyclists to be on the road. The law has already allowed it, so this is to find out any bias.

        Once you get an answer if is one you like to tell them you are going to support them and tell everyone.

        If it is an answer, you do not like, get it confirmed somehow. Record the response or get a written response, some way to hold the person accountable later. Usually when a politician finds out, they’re commented was stupid, they correct it.

        If they still stand by a negative answer, let the world know. If proof of the claim I’ll post it, and I know of a lot of other cycling blogs that will post it. Let your local bicycle advocacy groups know. (You are a member right!).

After an Incident

English: A commuter cyclist in the London morn...

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For what to do before an incident and what to do after an incident see: How do you prove to a cop that you were not at fault in an accident with a car when you were on a bike?

If you follow the advice in How do you prove to a cop that you were not at fault in an accident with a car when you were on a bike?You should get a response. If not, then proceed to step 3.

After an Incident and you do not get a response!

1.     Make noise. Make lots of noise. To borrow an old slogan, be loud and proud.

        Contact the head of the law enforcement agency and get a reason why you have not had a response. Furthermore, ask for a copy of the file on the incident. In most states, you have the right and can get this file.

        Contact the District Attorney’s office and find out why charges have not been pressed against the driver. Ask for a copy of the file.

        Contact the chief political politician, mayor, commissioner, governor and ask them why nothing has happened. Ask them to investigate. A month later asks for a copy of their file on the incident.

        Contact the local Visitors Bureau and let them know that you have that their city/county/state is dangerous, and you will let other cyclists know. Those cyclists’ make up a big part of the economy and cyclists visit the area to ride.

The more the merrier!

Ask your friends and other cyclists to help. They can also contact law enforcement, the District Attorney, the visitor’s bureau and the media to add weight and support to what you are doing.

In all communications, it is important for both you, and others that are assisting, to copy people on the communications. In many cases the people you copy are the most important part of the letter. CC everyone above on each other’s letters. Always include any bicycle groups or clubs with a copy. Include bike shops as a cc in your communication so the people you are contacting understand that you are getting the word out.

In your communications be polite and be persistent. Set up a schedule. Give the prosecutor and law enforcement a month at first. No response gives them another month, then 2 weeks then every week. I would suggest you do this in such a way you can keep records of your communications. What you said and when you said it. Email or in writing is best.

In your communications be polite and be persistent. Do not threaten anything except your vote and your obligation to communicate. You do not want to put yourself in any box except as an aggrieved citizen or worse charged with harassing a government official.

If you have not heard anything after the first week, get on the publicity horn. Prepare a written statement of what occurred. Include any witness names and contact information. Include any photographs, GPS files, etc. and send it to every media outlet in your community and every cycling media outlet. Most will ignore it, but on a slow news day, you may get lucky.

You want your initial contact to be valid enough so that you are not considered a whack job by the media. You want to come across as a member of the community hat was almost killed, and you want to know why the police have not done anything.

If you want to invest a ton of time, you can go to the courts in many jurisdictions and request a special prosecutor. A special prosecutor is one from another county whom the court orders to investigate the case and see if charges should be brought. This is rarely granted, however, it will show that you are serous, and it will help get more media interest in your case.

You may never get a ticket issued against the driver. However, you will let the community know that cycling is dangerous in your community and what politicians and other elected officials think about the issue.

If enough people do something, something will happen. Eventually, law enforcement will track down and start issuing tickets to.

What do you think? Leave a comment.

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Copyright 2012 Recreation Law (720) Edit Law

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Tell Maui and HI that you’re not coming until they prove the place is safe.

Cyclists assaulted by driver and cops do nothing in Maui.

A friend of mine was almost killed by a truck while riding his bike in Maui. To read his article see Maui Road Rage: A Local Tried to Kill Us. It is amazing that he did not suffer greater injuries or be killed.

Simply put while riding his bike a truck driver cuts him off knocking him to the ground with his truck door. While on the ground the truck driver gets out of this truck and starts to threaten the cyclists. DL, the cyclists responded with a well place kick to the thinking part of the truck driver.

What is a greater in amazement is the fact that locals stopped to help him after the truck driver tried to kill him and got the driver’s license number and the police of Maui did nothing.

DL’s injuries were a skinned knee. He got lucky. However, we have to put a stop to this. This is assault, plain and simple. The act was a felonious assault because of the deadly weapon, the truck.

Do Something

Contact the Maui Tourists bureau and let them know about the article. Email address is: info@hvcb.org. Website contact address.

Have you read this article Maui Road Rage: A Local Tried to Kill Us? Is it a common practice for the Maui police to ignore assaults on tourists by locals? The police had everything they needed to prosecute the idiot: Witness statements and the vehicle license plate number and they did nothing.

Why would I come to Maui when it is a dangerous place?

Contact the Maui Tourists bureau and tell them you are not coming to Maui until it is a safe place to ride.

Contact the Hawaiian tourist bureau and tell them you want a response and want to know if Hawaii is a safe place to ride a bike. Email address is: info@hvcb.org

Have you read this article Maui Road Rage: A Local Tried to Kill Us? Is it a common practice for the Maui or other Hawaiian police to ignore assaults on tourists by locals? The police had everything they needed to prosecute the idiot. Witness statements and the vehicle license plate number and they did nothing.

Why would I come to Hawaii when it is a dangerous place?

Contact the Maui police department and tell them their actions were disgusting, and you are not coming to Maui until they have gotten rid of the corruption in their department. The Police Chief’s contact information is: Gary Yabuta crs@mpd.net

Contact the Maui prosecutor’s office and ask them if they are going to allow assaults like this to go unprosecuted. John D. Kim, Prosecuting Attorney, Prosecuting.Attorney@co.maui.hi.us

Repost D.L. article on Twitter, Facebook and your own blog. Let the world know that cyclists are not going to stand up for this and tourism includes cyclists.

To read more about how to protect yourself and push prosecution in these case read How do you prove to a cop that you were not at fault in an accident with a car when you were on a bike?

What do you think? Leave a comment.

If you like this let your friends know or post it on FB, Twitter or Linkedin

Copyright 2012 Recreation Law (720) Edit Law

blog@rec-law.us

Twitter: RecreationLaw

Facebook: Rec.Law.Now

Facebook Page: Outdoor Recreation & Adventure Travel Law

Blog:www.recreation-law.com

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Kayak rental shop found not liable in kayaking death

In a case with very conflicting facts, a Federal Jury has found a Hawaiian kayak rental company not guilty for the death of a kayak renter. The Star Bulletin reported in Company not guilty in Maui kayak deaththat the rental company was not liable for the death of a woman whose body has not been found.

Sea kayaking is a popular way to explore Keala...

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The claims of the husband were the kayak rental company should not have rented the kayaks to the couple because of small craft warnings. The company claimed the husband had rented kayaks twice before with no problems and they had told the husband to kayak close to shore where they would be protected by the winds.

The facts of the case were in dispute as to how the wife died. The husband claims they were swept out to see and she was attacked by a shark. However the life jacket that was found showed no bite marks and there was no other indication of problems.

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