Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Liability for DNV recreational trails?

DNV-sanctioned (and rebuilt) section of "Ladies Only" Trail 
on Mt. Fromme (NSMB.com files)

Liability for recreational trails

18 June 2012
Article by Dianne Saxe

In our December article for Municipal World, we wrote about municipal liability to cyclists for failing to maintain roads in a proper state of repair. Municipalities could similarly find themselves liable as the occupiers of recreational path systems, if the trails are not adequately maintained.
The standard a municipality must meet in ensuring the safety of recreational trail users varies by province. Where Occupiers’ Liability statutes exist, they may require the occupier to take “reasonable care” or may only require the same degree of care as must be shown to a trespasser, namely that it may not act with “reckless disregard” of that person’s presence on their property. The common law is in effect where there is no such statute...

...“Reckless Disregard”

To encourage the creation of recreational trails, the Occupiers’ Liability statutes of British Columbia, Manitoba, Ontario, Prince Edward Island, and Nova Scotia specifically restrict the duty owed by owners and occupiers to recreational trail users. Trail users are deemed to have willingly assumed the risks associated with the trails. The Ontario Court of Appeal described the rationale for this in Schneider v. St. Clair Region Conservation Authority. Thus, a municipality that maintains recreational trails in these provinces only have two duties: not to create a danger with the deliberate intent of doing harm and not to act with reckless disregard of the person’s presence....
Where does DNV liability stand in light of all their sanctioned "amusement park" structure building for mountain biking on our public forest trails? There are miles of wooden structures built: rollercoaster rides, teeter-totters, ladder bridges, jump ramp, wall rides, etc. In a rain forest wood tends to fall apart, with rungs missing or broken, quite frequently -- especially with the wear and tear from bikes constantly riding over them in all sorts of inclement weather?

DNV trail signage is not always clear to most folk, especially when you have contradictory signage on one stretch of trail, where it starts off as "Hiking Only" trail, then suddenly changes without warning into a "Multi-Use" (hiking and biking) trail. And what are the legal differences between a Mountain Biking "Only"; Mtn Biking "Primary"; and Multi-Use Trails? Signage, like waiver forms, do not always protect against liability, as we see time and time again. Discuss.

Saturday, June 09, 2012

Bill C-38 protested outside Saxton's office

  Conservatives omnibus budget bill could fundamentally change Canada.


Tuesday, June 05, 2012

Is this the best letter ever written on what is really behind high-density on North Shore?

                                             Read more: North Shore's essence squandered


 Why haven't the North Shore's politicians and municipalities ever opted to permanently put into place the necessary bylaws, zoning regulations and legalities that will ensure the protection and preservation of the heritage and character of its original homes and single family neighbourhoods, or the original mature native trees, lush landscapes and prolific gardens that once proliferated on the streets of all its communities?