The court authorizes a class action against the Mont-Sainte-Anne Ski Resort following two incidents that occurred last winter when the gondola suddenly stopped 20 days apart.
• Read also: Mont Sainte-Anne: citizens in search of transparency
• Read also: Request for class action against Stoneham and Mont Sainte-Anne
• Read also: Have ski resorts sold too many season tickets?
It is therefore a first victory for the dozens of customers of the resort who had experienced quite a scare first on February 21, 2020, then on the following March 11. On both occasions, the sudden stopping of the gondolas had “made the gondolas throw and turn in violent movements”, describes the judgment of the Superior Court.
On February 21, the unsolicited emergency shutdown at around 10 a.m. caused injuries to around 20 skiers, including at least one fracture requiring ambulance transport. Several other skiers suffered a nervous shock or said they had experienced the scares of their lives.
According to the collective action request, around 100 people were in the cable cars at the time of the incident.
However, twenty days later, a second event of the same type had occurred at 2:05 p.m. This time a few dozen people were in the chairlift and the injuries had been less severe.
Joint class action
Following these two events, two class actions were brought by citizens. Judge Jacques G Bouchard authorized the joining of the two files and allowed the proceedings to continue.
At this stage, the judge did not have to rule on the merits of the case. He just had to make sure that the complaints had a common denominator.
“The applicants have shown a serious appearance of right to be asserted”, considered the judge. The class action was therefore authorized and two representatives, Marcel Gagnon and Mélanie Ancti, were appointed in anticipation of the hearing of the case on the merits.
Marcel Gagnon is claiming $ 25,000 in compensation for him while the amount for his group remains to be defined. In the second case, Ms. Anctil claims $ 56,000 while her group could receive $ 10,000 each if the court were to prove her right.