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Old 10 May 2010, 18:32   #11
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I am not sure it is about human rights but you cannot exclude liability totally

With the benefit of certain reports it seems to me that offering rib rides is a no no particuarly re back poblems
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Old 10 May 2010, 18:52   #12
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With the benefit of certain reports it seems to me that offering rib rides is a no no particuarly re back poblems
Phil - I notice you are a lawyer. Your statement above doesn't surprise me based on this - but I have to say I always prefer lawyers who are able to balance the risks with the commercial and social realities of the world. Are they really a "no no", or actual "high risk activities". There is no reason not to offer or undertake high risk activities, simply that you need to make people aware of the risks and do everything you can to mitigate those risks. Skiing, mountainbiking, parachuting, rock climbing etc - are all (percieved as) high risk activities - but it doesn't stop people opperating viable businesses in these areas. RIB thrill rides are potentially in the same ball park.

The problem, which I think RW is alluding to, is:

(a) in a cash tight competitive business, can you afford to turn customers away, return to shore etc - whenever your skippers' gut feel is that this punter is not up to this ride.

(b) do customers really understand the activity and risk they are undertaking. Do they think that the "safety warnings" are all to keep lawyers and officials happy, rather than highlighting a real risk.

(c) could some of your participants be there under peer pressure, and less likely to highlight a concern / discomfort as a result.

However there may be a similar issue with your insurers: do they understand the risks you are intentionally exposing customers to as part of "experience" or do they think you are providing a sight seeing / ferry / seasafari service - because presumably if you talk about it more in those terms premiums are lower...
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Old 10 May 2010, 23:02   #13
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Originally Posted by Polwart View Post

The problem, which I think RW is alluding to, is:

(a) in a cash tight competitive business, can you afford to turn customers away, return to shore etc - whenever your skippers' gut feel is that this punter is not up to this ride.

(b) do customers really understand the activity and risk they are undertaking. Do they think that the "safety warnings" are all to keep lawyers and officials happy, rather than highlighting a real risk.

(c) could some of your participants be there under peer pressure, and less likely to highlight a concern / discomfort as a result.

However there may be a similar issue with your insurers: do they understand the risks you are intentionally exposing customers to as part of "experience" or do they think you are providing a sight seeing / ferry / seasafari service - because presumably if you talk about it more in those terms premiums are lower...

I disagree with a and b. this isn't about economics (You can't put a price on safety) I think a passenger has a right to expect the skipper to offer them a safe trip even if it means throwing them off the boat at the nearest jetty if they have been naughty.

What if you let a porker like me on the boat and they get injured, would that be your liability for not refusing them a ride or the porker for being too heavy to handle the ride.

What medical or behavioural criteria stops some one from getting a rib ride or exonerates the operating company from injury liability arising from that ride.
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Old 11 May 2010, 01:15   #14
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Disclaimer

Thank you for the forum seperation, makes sense from shore based to this interest-

This is the format we use, with headed paper and the helm will gain a full list of everyone on each boat, I am aware other local operators have the same format and probably from the same insurer-

NOTICE to ALL Passengers
PLEASE READ THE FOLLOWING CAREFULLY:-

You are to take part in a High Performance Powerboat Experience that carries a risk element.

We the undersigned agree to save harmless and keep indemnified xxxxxx and its servants, agents, crew or other individuals or bodies concerned with running or operating the xxxxxx power boats from and against all actions, claims, costs and expenses and demands in respect of myself\ ourselves or anyone connected with me \ us however caused arising out of or in connection with my taking part in the power boating activity AND I \ we hereby acknowledge that my\ our presence upon the said boat is entirely at my \our risk.

I\ We confirm that we have read and understand this notice and have been given the opportunity of asking any questions about the effect of it which have been explained to my\our satisfaction.

I have fully disclosed any medical conditions or injury that I have had during the past 10 years You could suffer injury if you have any of the following conditions heart or respiratory problems, any back or neck problems, diabetes, asthma or any other condition requiring regular medication or you are pregnant

Date Time Name Signature








Boat name- Time of departure:


Skipper: Signature:
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Old 11 May 2010, 02:01   #15
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Originally Posted by C2 RIBS View Post
Thank you for the forum seperation, makes sense from shore based to this interest-

This is the format we use, with headed paper and the helm will gain a full list of everyone on each boat, I am aware other local operators have the same format and probably from the same insurer-

NOTICE to ALL Passengers
PLEASE READ THE FOLLOWING CAREFULLY:-

You are to take part in a High Performance Powerboat Experience that carries a risk element.

We the undersigned agree to save harmless and keep indemnified xxxxxx and its servants, agents, crew or other individuals or bodies concerned with running or operating the xxxxxx power boats from and against all actions, claims, costs and expenses and demands in respect of myself\ ourselves or anyone connected with me \ us however caused arising out of or in connection with my taking part in the power boating activity AND I \ we hereby acknowledge that my\ our presence upon the said boat is entirely at my \our risk.

I\ We confirm that we have read and understand this notice and have been given the opportunity of asking any questions about the effect of it which have been explained to my\our satisfaction.

I have fully disclosed any medical conditions or injury that I have had during the past 10 years You could suffer injury if you have any of the following conditions heart or respiratory problems, any back or neck problems, diabetes, asthma or any other condition requiring regular medication or you are pregnant

Date Time Name Signature








Boat name- Time of departure:


Skipper: Signature:
Apart from the above do you have to prepare a risk assessment for each trip .?

Or just a general risk assessment that can be accessed by anybody at any time on request.

Also method statements for any event.??

To me it looks like your valued customer would have signed a sort of omission of liability but not knowing any of the risks or indeed methods of rescue for one instance.



As it seems to me even by signing the above well written paper there is still a possibly that one could still sue you.

However a small few lines on your document stating a full risk and method statement has been prepared and is available for your viewing.

Will I am sure cover you.

But with out a risk and method statement no risks are outlined also methods like rescue are NOT outlined either.
So your customer would have signed a sort of omission of liability but not knowing any of the risks or indeed methods of rescue for one instance.

It's a great case to argue in a court of law. And as myself a person that used to deal with stuff like this on a daily basis I think you could loose.
Worth checking out.

Robert
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Old 11 May 2010, 02:06   #16
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Originally Posted by C2 RIBS View Post
Thank you for the forum seperation, makes sense from shore based to this interest-

This is the format we use, with headed paper and the helm will gain a full list of everyone on each boat, I am aware other local operators have the same format and probably from the same insurer-

NOTICE to ALL Passengers
PLEASE READ THE FOLLOWING CAREFULLY:-

You are to take part in a High Performance Powerboat Experience that carries a risk element.

We the undersigned agree to save harmless and keep indemnified xxxxxx and its servants, agents, crew or other individuals or bodies concerned with running or operating the xxxxxx power boats from and against all actions, claims, costs and expenses and demands in respect of myself\ ourselves or anyone connected with me \ us however caused arising out of or in connection with my taking part in the power boating activity AND I \ we hereby acknowledge that my\ our presence upon the said boat is entirely at my \our risk.

I\ We confirm that we have read and understand this notice and have been given the opportunity of asking any questions about the effect of it which have been explained to my\our satisfaction.

I have fully disclosed any medical conditions or injury that I have had during the past 10 years You could suffer injury if you have any of the following conditions heart or respiratory problems, any back or neck problems, diabetes, asthma or any other condition requiring regular medication or you are pregnant

Date Time Name Signature








Boat name- Time of departure:


Skipper: Signature:
Apart from the above do you have to prepare a risk assessment for each trip .?

Or just a general risk assessment that can be accessed by anybody at any time on request.

Also method statements for any event.??


As it seems to me even by signing the above well written paper there is still a possibly that one could still sue you.

However a small few lines on your document stating a full risk and method statement has been prepared and is available for your viewing.

Will I am sure cover you.

But with out a risk and method statement no risks are outlined also methods like rescue are NOT outlined either.
So your customer would have signed a sort of omission of liability but not knowing any of the risks or indeed methods of rescue for one instance.

But would have signed anything due to the excitement due to come.

It's a great case to argue in a court of law. And as myself a person that used to deal with stuff like this on a daily basis I think you could loose.
Worth checking out.

Robert
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Old 11 May 2010, 02:27   #17
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Robert, In answer to the main question , yes I have a full risk assessment policy and health and safety at work doc which all crews have to understand and follow. I can presently send clients these docs if requested but will look at your example of having a copy available to view and add the line about these assessments-
Each helm has the overiding responsibilty to ensure they know the days activities and plans/weather, plan a route and also a secondary. We review everyone elses accidents via MAIB and look at ways to reduce risk.
One simple method is to monitor your clients and ensure we let them know if we see larger waves/wake, and they are all briefed about their personal lifejackets and also proceedures for MOB and recovery, where all equipment is. We also try to find someone who will activate DSC should the helm be unable to do so.

No simple answer to any of this as there is risk attached, but by being responsible for our activities we always do what we can to ensure safety. We do not go out just to "blast" about and frighten anyone. I wont people to enjoy themselves and come back.

This also about running events that have risk but we have done all we can to identify all risk and looked at how to remove this risk or lower the risk. Each day will be different due to weather and sea conditions. We are about mitigating the dangers/risks and the last thing I wont to do is run a paper trail ticking boxes
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Old 11 May 2010, 02:36   #18
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Originally Posted by C2 RIBS View Post
Robert, In answer to the main question , yes I have a full risk assessment policy and health and safety at work doc which all crews have to understand and follow. I can presently send clients these docs if requested but will look at your example of having a copy available to view and add the line about these assessments-
Each helm has the overiding responsibilty to ensure they know the days activities and plans/weather, plan a route and also a secondary. We review everyone elses accidents via MAIB and look at ways to reduce risk.
One simple method is to monitor your clients and ensure we let them know if we see larger waves/wake, and they are all briefed about their personal lifejackets and also proceedures for MOB and recovery, where all equipment is. We also try to find someone who will activate DSC should the helm be unable to do so.

No simple answer to any of this as there is risk attached, but by being responsible for our activities we always do what we can to ensure safety. We do not go out just to "blast" about and frighten anyone. I wont people to enjoy themselves and come back.
I have no doubts in anybody's ability to run there company I was really just suggesting that
the more paperwork one has the less chance of claims made against one.
No way was I having a go at anybody.
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Old 11 May 2010, 03:43   #19
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I disagree with a and b. this isn't about economics (You can't put a price on safety) I think a passenger has a right to expect the skipper to offer them a safe trip even if it means throwing them off the boat at the nearest jetty if they have been naughty.

What if you let a porker like me on the boat and they get injured, would that be your liability for not refusing them a ride or the porker for being too heavy to handle the ride.

What medical or behavioural criteria stops some one from getting a rib ride or exonerates the operating company from injury liability arising from that ride.
Stu - I agree but that decision is easy to make sitting here pontificating. It is at best a subjective decision, and one that I suspect becomes less clear when its been p**sing down all season and so turnover is down, your worried about paying wages this week and a fat bloke turns up with fifty quid in his hand.

You disagreed with (b) but didn't explain why (it was a question so not sure how you can disagree with it). Do you think that people walking down the pontoon towards a "RIB RIDE" experience really believe that they are undertaking a high risk activity? I'm not asking if they should understand it, I'm asking if they do understand it at most places. How about when the whole boat is chartered - does everyone understand it or perhaps just the guy who booked it?

===

C2 - if you or any of your competitors asked me to sign that statement I'd be walking away. Since you can't contract out of your liabilities its a bit pointless anyway. But the message it sends is 'if we hurt you out there that is your fault not ours'. You are controlling the boat; you are deciding if the conditions are safe; you are briefing people. It is your responsibility.

On top of which by the time someone makes it through the second sentence they are asleep with legal waffle and aren't actually reading what it says any more. The key points about back injury pregnancy etc are lost at the bottom...

Some thoughts - whilst it says it is high risk - it doesn't explain the likely risks e.g. high g-forces, twists turns, acceleration, deceleration, jumps. Ask the layman walking down the pontoon what the risk of injury are on the RIB ride and I'll bet he thinks it is sinking / falling overboard.

Can you explain how a person with diabetes is more likely to become injured on your boat than a non-diabetic person as a result of your activity.
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Old 11 May 2010, 03:48   #20
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It strikes me yet again, that this forum has a wealth of expertise and talent.

In order to protect both customers and the operators, could "we" come up with a specimin document that gives protection for both. Whilst I am sure operators have their own documents, we wont always see it from either the expert legal side or necessarily the customers.

I/we are not after something for nothing, I just think that from the sensible comments made so far and the diverse backgrounds of the members, a top class document could be produced that could be a shinning light for the industry.

OK, so now shoot me down ....

Steve
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