Legislature chambers have approved a bill granting immunity to owners whose guests are subject to inherent risks that brings, like birds, bugs, and tree stumps.
As per a report, the owners claim that the pandemic and South Dakota’s open invitation to people out of state led to an increase ofwho are not familiar with the unpredictability of nature.
Mary Arlington, executive director of theOwners Association and a former owner, testified in both House and Senate Judiciary Committees in favor of the bill, which reduces the possibility of lawsuits against owners.
Arlington claimed that the bill does not deal with gross negligence. The issue is the varying and unpredictable nature of meadows and woods that have led to many lawsuits regarding conditions that are beyond the campground’s control.
“We visited with industry insurance carriers, and they confirmed they’ve seen lawsuits on such natural situations as bee stings and mosquito bites,” Arlington said.
Arlington stated that manyare natives of . However, there’s been a recent surge of people who are not .
“Given the pandemic’s call to thefor social time and , these inexperienced have come out like crazy.”
Arlington stated that theseexpect comfort that the realities of nature simply can’t provide.
House Bill 1176 lays out the full list of hazards, including trees and tree stumps, uneven terrain, weather, wild animals, roots, rocks, mud, sand, and the absence of street lights.
The bill requires owners ofto display a notice of known dangers and an assurance of their immunity from liability in the event of accidents or deaths that result from the inherent risks of .
The bill will now go to the governor’s office for signature.
This story originally appeared on South Dakota Public Broadcasting.