Woman Seriously Injured in Collision at Vail Mountain, CO Awarded $750,000

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Lionshead Village, Vail, from the gondola. Credit: ski-epic

A female skier who was seriously injured in a collision at Vail Mountain, CO in December 2017 has just received a $750,000 payout. Paulina Romero Labra suffered serious injuries as a result of the collision, including a shattered left humerus, when Craig Michel of Virginia collided with her from behind at a high rate of speed.

On December 8, 2017, Labra was skiing on the Lower Lion’s Way trail at Vail, reports Vail Daily. According to witness deposition, Michel was attempting to pass Labra on a narrow portion of Lower Lion’s Way where there was no room for him to pass. Michel failed to maintain his speed and course and failed to maintain a proper lookout when he collided with Labra from behind at a high rate of speed, a violation of the Colorado Skier Safety Act. The Eagle County Sheriff’s Department investigated the collision, but no charges were filed.

“We were clearly able to prove that Mr. Michel was 100% at fault for the ski collision,” said Labra’s attorney, Joseph D. Bloch “As a result, Mr. Michel’s insurance company offered a substantial amount to settle the case to avoid going to trial.”

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Vail Mountain frontside trail map

Labra has undergone almost two-years of medical treatment and rehabilitation since the accident, and may even need a replacement humerus in the future.

“Ms. Labra (and her husband) have suffered tremendously as a result of the ski collision,” Bloch said. “They are very pleased with this settlement, which will enable Ms. Labra to obtain the additional medical treatment she needs for her injuries, including future surgery.”

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