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PAGE ONE :: FORUMS :: NEWS :: LIABILITY WAIVERS

Divers 1, dive ops 0: Shred liability waivers says US court

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by MAURA DOLAN and ARI B. BLOOMEKATZ

DEMA
Well actually, it's like your money (scuba diving is expensive) and your life (scuba diving is dangerous). In a major setback for the scuba diving industry, the California Supreme Court ruled that scuba diving operators may be held liable for gross negligence regardless of the wording on liability waivers.

SAN FRANCISCO (17 July 2007) -- Recreation providers in California may be held liable for gross negligence regardless of the wording on liability waivers signed by participants or their parents, the California Supreme Court ruled 6-1 Monday.

The state high court decision permits the parents of a developmentally disabled girl who drowned at a summer camp run by the city of Santa Barbara to sue even though her mother had signed an agreement assuming "full responsibility for risk of bodily injury, death or property damage."

California's recreation and sports industry had strongly urged the court to reject liability, warning that it could be the death knell for camps, fitness centers, hiking clubs and other providers of physical activity...

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