In some jurisdictions, including Tennessee, if you are injured by an ultra-hazardous activity, you are entitled to compensation for your damages. You are entitled to a recovery regardless of whether the person conducting the ultra-hazardous activity used the utmost care to prevent any harm. This is called “strict liability.”
Whether or not an activity qualifies as an ultra-hazardous activity is a question of law, and this is why you need an experienced personal injury lawyer Memphis, TN trusts to help advance your case. The insurance company on the other side will likely argue that the defendant’s activity was not ultra-hazardous. An ultra-hazardous activity is something more than dangerous, and as such, the list of activities that will qualify as “ultra-hazardous” is relatively short. Generally, an ultra-hazardous activity is one that presents an abnormally dangerous risk of injury to persons or their property. Courts take into consideration the following factors in deciding whether an activity is ultra-hazardous:
- Existence of a high degree of risk of some harm
- Likelihood that the harm that results will be great
- Inability to eliminate risk by the exercise of reasonable care
- Extent to which the activity is not a matter of common usage
- Inappropriateness of the activity to the place where it is carried on.
- Extent to which its value to the community is outweighed by its dangerous attributes.
Examples of activities that have been held to be ultra-hazardous are: carrying out of blasting operations, storing explosives or harmful chemicals, and the keeping of wild animals. Examples of activities that have been held not to constitute ultra-hazardous activities are: the use of drugs and alcohol, shooting fireworks, and automobile racing on a designated racetrack. Things like riding motorcycles may not be as clear cut to clients, but a motorcycle and car accident lawyer Memphis, TN residents trust can help clear up any questions.
Remember though, that even if an activity is not considered ultra-hazardous, you may still be entitled to a recovery if the defendant failed to use reasonable care under the circumstances. The doctrine of strict liability which applies to ultra-hazardous activities simply makes it easier to recover.
If you’ve been involved in an accident, whether due to an ultra-hazardous activity or not, contact the personal injury lawyer Memphis, TN goes to time and time again.
Thanks to our friends and contributors at Wiseman Bray PLLC who have significant experience fighting for injury victims in Tennessee.