Monday, August 19, 2013

State university not liable for hockey puck injury, court of claims rules

Miami University is not liable for a woman's $200 deductible, the Ohio Court of Claims has ruled, in a case where she was injured by a flying hockey puck. The Court said that, “[t]here is no obligation on the part of the operator of a hockey game such as M.U. to protect a spectator against being hit by a flying puck ... Evidence has shown defendant did take measures by erecting glass and boards around the perimeter of the Ice Arena to provide some safety to spectators from errant pucks. Nevertheless, pucks do enter the stands; an inherent risk in the game of hockey, which is common, expected, and frequent,” the court said. “Consequently, plaintiff’s claim is denied since defendant owed her no duty to protect her from the known danger presented.” The court applied the legal doctrine of primary assumption of the risk. The woman had argued that because the injury occurred before the game began, this doctrine did not apply. The court ruled otherwise. The decision may be found here: