Plaintiff, a marine, visited an indoor go-kart racing track in Southern California. While driving a go-kart on the first lap, he collided with a fellow racer's kart during a turn and crashed into the wall. Plaintiff claimed the safety barrier was unsafe because it allegedly caught his left leg and hyper-extended his left knee during the crash. He claimed the go-kart company had knowledge of the alleged defects in the barrier and took no action to correct or replace it.
Defendant's motion for summary adjudication was granted, dismissing Plaintiff's general negligence claims, because Plaintiff signed an express liability waiver before his race. The case proceeded to trial on Plaintiff's gross negligence claims, which are not released by a waiver based on California Law.
Defendant contended that the barrier is exceptionally safe based on its national and international safety certifications for kart racing, its ability to seriously reduce potential injuries to racers, and its extremely low incidents of historical injuries at the track.
Defendant also argued Plaintiff's injuries were a known risk associated with go-kart racing and Plaintiff was 100 percent responsible for any harm based on comparative fault because: Plaintiff contributed to his own injuries by driving his go-kart in an unsafe and reckless manner, colliding with another racer, failing to use his brakes, failing to avoid the crash, and unreasonably sticking his left leg up and out from the kart before the crash.