(File photo)

Man found liable after runaway snowmobile hits friend on B.C. mountain

Snowmobile travelled 1.5 kilometres over a cliff and through a ravine before hitting friend

A B.C. Supreme Court judge has ruled that the owner of a runaway snowmobile is liable for the injuries caused when that snowmobile hit a fellow rider.

In documents filed late last month, Justice Dev Dley found that the negligence of Davon Webb not wearing a snowmobile tether cord meant he was on the hook for damages caused by his snowmobile careening into Angelo Steven Passerin.

Passerin was hit during a 10-person snowmobile excursion up Mount Renshaw, just north of McBride, B.C., on March 21, 2013.

Halfway through the day, Webb’s sister waved to Passerin when her snowmobile got stuck in deep some on a nearby hill.

Passerin had gone only 10 feet towards her when he was hit by Webb’s runaway snowmobile.

Webb had been riding uphill at half throttle when he hit an unexpected snowdrift.

He braked, causing his snowmobile to pitch forward and throw him off into the snow.

The riderless snowmobile careened over a 100 foot cliff, climbed out of a 20 foot ravine and “raced full throttle for 1.5 kilometres” to collide with Passerin.

Another member of the group yelled to try and warn Passerin but his yells were not heard.

The group rushed to tend to Passerin’s injuries for three to four hours until a helicopter arrived to transport him to hospital.

The judge heard various accounts from Webb as to whether or not he attached the tether cord that was meant to turn off the snowmobile if the rider fell off.

The judge found Webb an unreliable witness and that his testimony “was fraught with contradictions on material points.”

Throughout various points throughout his testimony, Webb gave varying locations for where he had attached the tether cord. He started with his jacket, then his pants and then finally said that he had forgotten to reattach it before lunch. He admitted that he did not check whether or not the cord was attached after lunch.

The judge said that although Webb not wearing the cord did not in and of itself make him liable for Passerin’s injuries, Webb’s failure to do safety checks after lunch showed “that he did not have much regard for safety measures.”


@katslepian

katya.slepian@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Tweedsmuir Park wildfires grow to encompass more than 200,000 hectares

Four fires now managed under one as Tweedsmuir Complex, evacation orders and alerts still in place

‘Beauty amongst such tragedy:’ B.C. photographer captures nature’s trifecta

David Luggi’s photo from a beach in Fraser Lake shows Shovel Lake wildfire, Big Dipper and an aurora

B.C. declares state of emergency as more than 560 wildfires rage

This is only the fourth state of emergency ever issued during a fire season

UPDATE: 5 injured in plane crash following Abbotsford International Airshow

One in critical condition in incident involving vintage plane

B.C. team stays alive in Little League World Series after another nail-biter

Surrey-based squad scored a 6-4 win over Mexico reps in Williamsport on Monday

Kids, seniors at risk as smoke from distant fires hangs over parts of B.C.

B.C. Centre for Disease Control says children’s lungs don’t fully develop until about age 10

B.C. mother charged in 7-year-old daughter’s death appears in court

The 36-year-old mother, of Langley’s Aaliyah Rosa, has been charged with second-degree murder

VIDEO: Teen soccer phenomenon Alphonso Davies to visit B.C. kids camp

The 17-year-old Vancouver Whitecap player is one of the youngest players in MLS history

New plan to lift more than two million people past the poverty line

Anti-poverty strategy will aim for 50 per cent cut in low-income rates: source

Liberals scrap lottery system for reuniting immigrants with their parents

Lottery for parent sponsorship to be replaced, more applications to be accepted

Bear kills off-leash dog in B.C. park

There have been nearly 200 pet or livestock and bear encounters so far this year

Most Read