Best wishes from all of us at Slater Vecchio.

Nova Scotia is the first province to ticket skiers and snowboarders for not wearing a helmet while on the mountain. Violators will pay a $250 fine.

Like Nova Scotia, BC was one of the first provinces to introduce bike helmet laws. Should we follow their lead and require helmets on the mountain?

There is an ongoing debate. Critics believe that resources are better spent on public awareness campaigns that teach the importance of wearing a helmet.

Less than a week to go until Christmas and the holiday season in is full force. But the extra good cheer also tends to bring a spike in car accidents related to drinking and driving. This season, let’s hope the success of BC’s new drinking and driving laws will carry through into the New Year.

In the US, the White House has designated December as National Impaired Driving Prevention Month, a time to raise awareness about the consequences of driving while impaired by drugs or alcohol.

MADD (Mothers Against Drunk Driving) gives us some holiday advice for ensuring everyone’s safety on the roads:

The Pacific Coast Brain Injury Conference Society has launched Brainstreams.ca, a leading Canadian information and educational online resource. Brainstreams.ca helps meet the educational and social networking needs of the brain injury community throughout British Columbia and beyond. The site also seeks to increase awareness and prevention of brain injury.

The role of Facebook in BC Courtrooms is once again in the headlines.

In Dosangh v. Leblanc and St. Paul’s Hospital, a woman is suing doctors and support staff for damages suffered during open heart surgery. The plaintiff says that preventable complications during the surgery caused a stroke that left her with permanent mental and physical disabilities.

Lawyers for the hospital file an application with the BC Supreme Court asking for access to the plaintiff’s Facebook and Twitter accounts.

In our last post, Nicole reviewed some basics of ski and snowboard safety.

Now let’s look at some ski and snowboard accidents that ended up in Court.

In Kralik v. Mt. Seymour Resorts, a skier tries to clear some snow from the chairlift seat. He becomes entangled in the seat as it moves forward. He knows he will fall as the chairlift keeps moving, so he decides to let go when the fall is only three metres. He injures his shoulder and sues Mt. Seymour Resorts. He says the operator failed to stop the lift in time to prevent his fall.

It’s official. The snow is now falling on BC’s coastal mountains. And another La Nina year means a forecast calling for greater than average snowfall. Skiers and snowboarders rejoice.

Before hitting the slopes, I thought it wise to revisit some alpine safety sense.

First and foremost: avoid head injuries.

The most serious ski and snowboard injury is a head injury. Concussions represent 1 in 10 ski injuries, and slightly more for snowboarders.

Last post, Mike commented on the duty of care owed by drivers to protect their passengers.

This duty is a central issue in BC Supreme Court Case Vedan v. Stevens.

In this case, the driver of a pickup truck, Mr. Stevens, is leaving a campground to run an errand. He agrees to give four children a ride, allowing them to travel in the back of his truck. He warns them that they must behave and stay seated.

Do you always ensure that your passengers are wearing a seat belt? If not, you may be at fault for your passenger’s injuries in the case of an accident.

Vehicle occupants owe a duty of care to put on their own seat belts. But in some situations, the responsibility falls on the driver – as is the case with passengers under the age of 16.

Section 220 (6) of the Motor Vehicle Act says that a driver must ensure that passengers between the age of 6 and 16 are wearing a seat belt in a properly adjusted and securely fastened manner.

J.A.‘s recent post reminds us that when a light turns yellow, you must stop so long as it’s safe to do so.

BC Supreme Court case Henry v. Bennett gives us another example of why not to run a yellow light.

In this case, Ms. Bennett is stopped patiently in a left turn lane waiting to make a safe turn.

Travelling in the opposite direction, Mr. Henry approaches the intersection as the light turns yellow.