Snowmobile operators should ensure that they have insurance coverage.

January 12, 2015, Kitchener, Ontario

Posted by: Robert Deutschmann, Personal Injury Lawyer

The Brant News recently reported about a snowmobile accident.  The accident involved a single snowmobile that collided with a tree.  There was a passenger on the snowmobile at the time of the accident.  The snowmobile passenger was taken to Hamilton hospital by helicopter after the snowmobile collided with the tree.  The tree was hidden inside a bush line.  The snowmobile driver was unfamiliar with the snowmobile.  The police advised that it is important that snowmobile operators exercise caution considering the weather, the trail conditions and the snowmobile driver’s abilities to operate the snowmobile.  The police also advise the snowmobile drivers and passengers should wear helmets, drink no alcohol prior to operation and riding and operate only snowmobiles that they are familiar with.  Some additional advice includes when operating a snowmobile over frozen water, make sure that the ice is sufficiently strong to support the machine and passengers, be aware of open water around docks and shorelines, watch out for any exposed rocks and be cautious of any snow drifts as they may conceal pressure ridges or other hazards.  When driving at night the snowmobile driver should slow the vehicle down, wear clothing that has reflective material and always ride with a companion.

Snowmobile operators should ensure that they have insurance coverage for their snowmobile.  When hurt in a snowmobile accident the insured driver and passenger will be entitled to receive accident benefit coverage for injuries suffered in the accident.  This would include the potential for accident benefit coverage for those injured persons that are deemed to be “catastrophically impaired”.  In such a circumstance the injured party that is found to be catastrophically impaired will be entitled to receive up to $1million in medical and rehabilitation coverage and $1million in attendant care benefits.  Accident benefit coverage is available to all parties involved in the accident, regardless of fault.  As long as the accident itself is a material contributing cause to the injuries, and ongoing symptoms, then accident benefit coverage is available.  It is important to remember that the catastrophic impairment designation is only a designation.  The injured party is still required to show that any recommended medical and rehabilitation treatment is reasonable and necessary to treat the injured party, subject to the approval of the insurer.  In the event of any dispute between the insurer and the insured party regarding whether recommended treatment is reasonable and necessary, then the issue has to be resolved through a dispute resolution process.  This process starts with mediation where a mediator assists to see if the two parties can come to a resolution of their matter.  In the event that the parties cannot come to a mediated resolution, then the matter moves on to arbitration.  The insured party has two years from the date of denial within which to commence an arbitration.

Posted under Catastrophic Injury, Drunk Driving Accidents, Fractures, Personal Injury, Treatment

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About Deutschmann Law

Deutschmann Law serves South-Western Ontario with offices in Kitchener-Waterloo, Cambridge, Woodstock, Brantford, Stratford and Ayr. The law practice of Robert Deutschmann focuses almost exclusively in personal injury and disability insurance matters. For more information, please visit www.deutschmannlaw.com or call us toll-free at 1-866-414-4878.

The opinions expressed here, while intended to provide useful information, should not be interpreted as legal recommendations or advice.

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