The Toronto Star: Extreme-sports facilities not required to report injuries

The Toronto Star: Extreme-sports facilities not required to report injuries

Ian McAdam was mountain biking down a trail at Blue Mountain Ski Resort in July 2007, when his bike bucked on a dirt jump — sending him over the handlebars. He broke his neck.

At the age of 13, McAdam was suddenly a quadriplegic.

But the resort wasn’t required to report the incident to any government body or the public.

Eight years after the crash, McAdam is among those questioning why injuries at extreme sports facilities are typically dealt with behind closed doors and not publicly reported.

In 2014, Blue Mountain reached an undisclosed financial settlement with McAdam after a $21-million lawsuit alleged the resort failed to have proper safety measures in place to assess and monitor young people using the hill.

McAdam’s lawyer, Toronto-based personal  injury lawyer Patrick Brown, has since raised red flags about the lack of government regulation surrounding extreme sports facilities

During the lawsuit, Brown was able to gain access to data revealing how many children have suffered significant injuries within the resort, but the numbers are secret: since it was through a court order, Brown said he legally can’t reveal the information.

“There should be some type of obligation to at least report online the number of injuries or deaths that might happen at that (extreme sport) activity, just so people get an understanding of the degree of risk,” Brown said.

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