Titsandwich11really? im well aware that the mtn can be held liable for lots of things and the waiver does almost nothing legally
but i think about 5% of the many, many parks ive ever been to had fences up to denote where to start for the right speed. how would having one, then taking it down, make them liable?
You're not thinking about this in terms of liability and litigation. For the record, part of my job is conducting accident investigations for these very situations. When the park crew decided a fence was necessary in order to prevent people from having too much speed, what they are essentially doing is saying to potential plaintiffs that they had an expectation that someone could be injured by carrying too much speed. By either removing it, and/or allowing it to be torn down/melt out or whatever, well, that's basically game over in court.
Had there never been a fence there to begin with, the resort would be in better standing legally. You can't acknowledge a hazard (say by fencing, padding, or signage) and then for whatever reason remove it without making some sort of significant change to the perceived hazard. That tells the court that the resort knew a hazard exists, chose to rectify it, then neglected/changed its mind. That is nearly impossible to sell to a jury faced with handing out fault and damages linked to the death of a young man and father.
An example would be a resort choosing to pad one snowmaking gun, and not another. If someone hit the unpadded gun, the first thing brought up would be "why is one padded and not the other? obviously you knew the potential danger, blah blah".
The truth is that even when all signage is appropriate, fencing or boo and rope is in place, when there is a catastrophic injury or death in the context of the terrain park and a manmade, resort built/placed feature, the resort will almost ALWAYS settle out of court.
I'm not in here debating whether or not this guy made a good decision for himself, or that in a loose conversation about accountability, responsibility for one's own safety and well-being, etc. I'd ever in a million years side with the guy. Litigation in this country, and often against ski areas is frivolous and greed driven, and it's pretty fucked up. But when push comes to shove, resorts fork over money because they can't really win one way or another. This case, about which i know next to nothing other than the rumors and claims made in this thread, sounds pretty open and shut to me.
Some advice for the people quoting friends that work for the resort. Shhhhhhhhh. You are DEFINITELY not doing your friend or the resort any favors. How would you feel if transcripts from this thread, or facebook or whatever were evidence? Sounds farfetched and paranoid, but not really. In general, it's a terrible idea to talk in specifics about these things on the internet when you're peripherally involved.