(1) The sport of ziplining and canopy touring is practiced by a large number of citizens of West Virginia and also attracts to West Virginia a large number of nonresidents, significantly contributing to the economy of West Virginia; and
(2) There are inherent risks in the sport of ziplining and canopy touring which should be understood by each participant and which are essentially impossible to eliminate by the zipline or canopy tour operator.
(1) "ACCT" means the Association for Challenge Course Technology;
(2) "Canopy tours" means a facility not located in an amusement park or carnival which is a supervised or guided educational or recreational activity including, but not limited to, beams, bridges, cable traverses, climbing walls, nets, platforms, ropes, swings, towers and ziplines, which may be installed on or in trees, poles, portable structures or buildings, or be part of self- supporting structures.
(3) "Challenge course standards" means the Challenge Course Standards: Association for Challenge Course Technology, Seventh Edition (2008), or substantially equivalent standards.
(4) "Division" means the West Virginia Division of Labor.
(5) "Employee" means an officer, agent, employee, servant, or volunteer, whether compensated or not, whether full time or not, who is authorized to act and is acting within the scope of his or her employment or duties with the zipline operator.
(6) "Operator" means any person, partnership, corporation or other commercial entity and their agents, officers, employees or representatives, who has operational responsibility for any zipline or canopy tour.
(7) "Participant" means any person who engages in activities on a zipline or canopy tour individually or in a group activity supervised by a zipline or canopy tour operator.
(8) "Special inspector" means a professional inspector who meets the qualifications set forth in ACCT or substantially equivalent standards and is certified by the division pursuant to section eight;
(9) "Zipline" means a commercial recreational activity where participants, by the use of a permanent cable or rope line suspended between support structures, enables a participant attached to a pulley to traverse from one point to another, for the purpose of giving the participants amusement, pleasure, thrills or excitement.
(1) Construct, install, maintain and operate all ziplines and canopy tours in accordance with ACCT challenge course standards or substantially equivalent standards;
(2) Ensure that ziplines and canopy tours are inspected at least annually by the Division or a special inspector;
(3) Train employees operating ziplines and canopy tours in accordance with national standards associated with their profession;
(4) Procure and maintain commercial general liability insurance against claims for personal injury, death and property damages occurring upon, in or about the zipline or canopy tour which affords protection to the limit of not less than $1 million for injury or death of a single person, to the limit of $2 million in the aggregate, and to the limit of not less than $50,000 for property damage; and
(5) Maintain records for a period of at least three years from the date of the creation of the record of:
(A) Proof of insurance;
(B) Inspection reports;
(C) Maintenance records; and
(b) Participants have a duty to act as would a reasonably prudent person when engaging in the sport of ziplining or canopy touring offered by a operator.
(c) No participant may:
(1) Use a zipline or canopy tour without the authority, supervision and guidance of the zipline operator;
(2) Drop, throw or expel any object from a zipline or canopy tour except as authorized by the operator;
(3) Perform any act which interferes with the running or operation of a zipline or canopy tour; or
(1) The annual inspection fee, if an inspection is to be done by the Division, is $100.00 for each zipline or canopy tour.
(2) The annual inspection fee, if an inspection is to be done by the Division, is due at the time of application for the annual permit.
(3) The Division shall waive the inspection fee for a zipline or canopy tour whose operator provides proof of nonprofit business status or for any zipline or canopy tour whose operator provides proof that an inspection has been completed within the last year by a certified special inspector as provided in section nine of this article.
(b) The Division may charge additional inspection fees equal to the annual inspection fee for additional inspections required as the result of the condemnation of a device for safety standards violations and for inspections required as a result of accidents involving serious or fatal injury. If any operator requires an inspection as the result of a violation of the permitting requirements of section nine of this article, the Division shall charge the operator $75.00 per hour in addition to the established inspection fee, including travel time.
(c) All fees received shall be deposited in a special revenue account in the State Treasury known as the "Amusement Rides and Amusement Attractions Safety Fund". The Division may use moneys from the fund for the purpose of enforcement of the provisions of this article. Expenditures are not authorized from collections, but are to be made only in accordance with appropriation by the Legislature and in accordance with the provisions of article three, chapter twelve of this code and upon fulfillment of the provisions of article two, chapter eleven-b of this code.
(b) The Division shall certify all special inspectors. The Division may suspend or revoke any certification of a special inspector upon a showing of good cause. The Division shall propose rules for legislative approval in accordance with the provisions of article three, chapter twenty-nine-a of this code providing an application process and minimum qualifications for certification of special inspectors. The Division may charge an annual certification fee not to exceed $50.00.
(b) Each year and at least fifteen days before the first time the zipline or canopy tour is made available in this state for public use, an operator shall apply for a permit to the Division on a form furnished by the Division and containing any information the Division may require.
(c) The Division shall, upon application and within ten days of the first time the zipline or canopy tour is made available in this state for public use, inspect the zipline or canopy tour.
(d) The Division shall inspect all zipline or canopy tours at least once every year.
(e) The Division may conduct inspections at any reasonable time without prior notice: Provided, That in lieu of performing its own inspection, the Division shall accept inspection reports from special inspectors certified by the Division.
An operator of a zipline or canopy tour shall notify the division not later than twenty-four hours after any fatality or accident occurring as a result of the operation of the zipline or canopy tour that results in a serious physical injury to any person requiring medical treatment or results in a loss of consciousness to any person. Notice to the division may be oral, written or by electronic means, but this notice requirement in no way limits the an operators responsibility to notify emergency or law enforcement personnel of the incident as soon as is reasonably practicable. The division shall investigate each fatality or accident and any safety-related complaint involving a zipline or canopy tour in this state about which the division receives notice. Every operator of a zipline or canopy tour shall keep a record of each accident or fatality and the record shall be kept with the certificate of inspection required by this article and shall be readily accessible to the public for inspection at any reasonable time at the place where the zipline or canopy tour is located.