Report Title:

County Skateboard Parks; Liability


Requires skateboarders to wear helmets, elbow pads, and knee pads at county skateboard parks. Allows counties to adopt an ordinance and post signs to satisfy this requirement in parks that are not supervised on a regular basis. Makes parents and guardians liable for skateboarding injuries.


S.B. NO.









relating to skateboard parks.



SECTION 1. Chapter 46, Hawaii Revised Statutes, is amended by adding a new part to be appropriately designated and to read as follows:


46-A County skateboard parks; requirements. (a) As used in this part, "county skateboard park" means any facility or park that is owned or operated by a county and that is designed and maintained for the purpose of recreational skateboard use.

(b) No operator of a county skateboard park shall permit any person to ride a skateboard in that park unless that person is wearing a helmet, elbow pads, and knee pads.

(c) With respect to a county skateboard park that is not supervised on a regular basis, the requirements of subsection (b) may be satisfied by compliance with the following:

(1) Adoption by the county of an ordinance requiring any person riding a skateboard at the facility to wear a helmet, elbow pads, and knee pads; and

(2) The posting of signs at the facility affording reasonable notice that any person riding a skateboard in the facility must wear a helmet, elbow pads, and knee pads, and that any person failing to do so will be subject to citation under the ordinance required by paragraph (1).

(d) Except as otherwise in this part, the parent or minor of any person under the age of eighteen who is injured as a result of skateboarding at a county skateboard park shall be required to pay for the care and treatment of that individual.

46-B Recreational activity liability; skateboard injury and claims recording requirements; report to legislature. (a) Skateboarding at a county skateboard park shall be deemed a recreational activity within the meaning of section 663-1.54 if all of the following conditions are met:

(1) The person skateboarding is fourteen years of age or older;

(2) The skateboarding activity that caused the injury was stunt, trick, or luge skateboarding; and

(3) The skateboard park is on public property that complies with section -A(b) or (c).

(b) Nothing in this section is intended to limit the liability of a county with respect to any other duty imposed pursuant to existing law. However, nothing in this section is intended to abrogate or limit any other legal rights, defenses, or immunities that may otherwise be available at law.

(c) The county shall maintain a record of all known or reported injuries incurred by a skateboarder in a county skateboard park. The county shall also maintain a record of all claims, paid and not paid, including any lawsuits and their results, arising from those incidents that were filed against the county. Copies of these records shall be filed annually, no later than January 30 of each year, with the attorney general, which shall submit a report to the legislature not later than January 31, 2007, on any known injuries incurred, claims asserted, and the results of any lawsuit filed, by persons injured while skateboarding in county skateboard parks."

SECTION 2. Section 663-1.54, Hawaii Revised Statutes, is amended to read as follows:

"[[]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.

(d) This section shall apply to counties and their employees who operate a county skateboard park as provided in section 46-B."

SECTION 3. There is appropriated out of the general revenues of the State of Hawaii the following sums, or so much thereof as may be necessary for fiscal year 2003-2004, to assist the counties in implementing this Act:

City and county of Honolulu $

County of Kauai $

County of Maui $

County of Hawaii $

Total $

SECTION 4. The sums appropriated shall constitute the State's share of the cost of mandated programs under Article VIII, section 5, of the State Constitution.

SECTION 5. Statutory material to be repealed is bracketed and stricken. New statutory material is underscored.

SECTION 6. This Act shall take effect on July 1, 2003; provided that on December 31, 2008:

(1) Section 46-B, Hawaii Revised Statutes, as enacted by section 1 of this Act, shall be repealed; and

(2) Section 663-1.54, Hawaii Revised Statutes, is reenacted in the form in which it read on June 30, 2003.