2015 Hawaii Revised Statutes
663. Tort Actions
663-1.54 Recreational activity liability.

HI Rev Stat § 663-1.54 (2015) What's This?

[§663-1.54] Recreational activity liability. (a) Any person who owns or operates a business providing recreational activities to the public, such as, without limitation, scuba or skin diving, sky diving, bicycle tours, and mountain climbing, shall exercise reasonable care to ensure the safety of patrons and the public, and shall be liable for damages resulting from negligent acts or omissions of the person which cause injury.

(b) Notwithstanding subsection (a), owners and operators of recreational activities shall not be liable for damages for injuries to a patron resulting from inherent risks associated with the recreational activity if the patron participating in the recreational activity voluntarily signs a written release waiving the owner or operator's liability for damages for injuries resulting from the inherent risks. No waiver shall be valid unless:

(1) The owner or operator first provides full disclosure of the inherent risks associated with the recreational activity; and

(2) The owner or operator takes reasonable steps to ensure that each patron is physically able to participate in the activity and is given the necessary instruction to participate in the activity safely.

(c) The determination of whether a risk is inherent or not is for the trier of fact. As used in this section an "inherent risk":

(1) Is a danger that a reasonable person would understand to be associated with the activity by the very nature of the activity engaged in;

(2) Is a danger that a reasonable person would understand to exist despite the owner or operator's exercise of reasonable care to eliminate or minimize the danger, and is generally beyond the control of the owner or operator; and

(3) Does not result from the negligence, gross negligence, or wanton act or omission of the owner or operator. [L 1997, c 129, §1]

Cross References

Hotelkeeper's liability for certain beach and ocean activities and recreational equipment, see §§486K-5.5 and 486K-5.6.

Landowners' liability, see chapter 520.

Ocean recreation and coastal areas programs, see chapter 200.

Law Journals and Reviews

Recreational Activity Liability in Hawai‘i: Are Waivers Worth the Paper on Which They Are Written? 21 UH L. Rev. 715 (1999).

Case Notes

Where defendant's motion for summary judgment argued that plaintiffs signed a valid waiver that released defendant from liability for injuries plaintiffs allegedly suffered when they participated in a recreational horseback riding activity provided by defendant, there were genuine issues of material fact as to whether defendant was negligent, and the release form's validity as a waiver of liability, which depended on whether the horse-biting incident was an "inherent risk" of the recreational activity that defendant provided to plaintiffs. 315 F. Supp. 2d 1061 (2004).

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