Check it Out!
Re: NW rides and landowner protections
Below is the applicable laws from the states of Washington and Oregon. For
other states, go http://www.law.utexas.edu/dawson/index.htm and look under
Recreational Use Statutes. One of the difficulties, however, is that some
landowners are gunshy, the legislation notwithstanding.
Washington Recreational Use Statute
ANNOTATED REVISED CODE OF WASHINGTON
TITLE 4. CIVIL PROCEDURE
CHAPTER 4.24. SPECIAL RIGHTS OF ACTION AND SPECIAL IMMUNITIES
Rev. Code Wash. (ARCW) s 4.24.200 (1994)
s 4.24.200. Liability of owners or others in possession of land and water
areas for injuries to recreation users -- Purpose
The purpose of RCW 4.24.200 and 4.24.210 is to encourage owners or others in
lawful possession and control of land and water areas or channels to make
them available to the public for recreational purposes by limiting their
liability toward persons entering thereon and toward persons who may be
injured or otherwise damaged by the acts or omissions of persons entering
HISTORY: 1969 ex.s. c 24 s 1; 1967 c 216 s 1.
Rev. Code Wash. (ARCW) s 4.24.210 (1994)
s 4.24.210. Liability of owners or others in possession of land and water
areas for injuries to recreation users -- Limitation
(1) Except as otherwise provided in subsection (3) of this section, any
public or private landowners or others in lawful possession and control of
any lands whether designated resource, rural, or urban, or water areas or
channels and lands adjacent to such areas or channels, who allow members of
the public to use them for the purposes of outdoor recreation, which term
includes, but is not limited to, the cutting, gathering, and removing of
firewood by private persons for their personal use without purchasing the
firewood from the landowner, hunting, fishing, camping, picnicking,
swimming, hiking, bicycling, the riding of horses or other animals, clam
digging, pleasure driving of off-road vehicles, snowmobiles, and other
vehicles, boating, nature study, winter or water sports, viewing or enjoying
historical, archaeological, scenic, or scientific sites, without charging a
fee of any kind therefor, shall not be liable for unintentional injuries to
(2) Except as otherwise provided in subsection (3) of this section, any
public or private landowner or others in lawful possession and control of
any lands whether rural or urban, or water areas or channels and lands
adjacent to such areas or channels, who offer or allow such land to be used
for purposes of a fish or wildlife cooperative project, or allow access to
such land for cleanup of litter or other solid waste, shall not be liable
for unintentional injuries to any volunteer group or to any other users.
(3) Any public or private landowner, or others in lawful possession and
control of the land, may charge an administrative fee of up to twenty-five
dollars for the cutting, gathering, and removing of firewood from the land.
Nothing in this section shall prevent the liability of such a landowner or
others in lawful possession and control for injuries sustained to users by
reason of a known dangerous artificial latent condition for which warning
signs have not been conspicuously posted. Nothing in RCW 4.24.200 and
4.24.210 limits or expands in any way the doctrine of attractive nuisance.
Usage by members of the public, volunteer groups, or other users is
permissive and does not support any claim of adverse possession.
(4) For purposes of this section, a license or permit issued for state-wide
use under authority of chapter 43.51 RCW, Title 75, or Title 77 RCW is not a
HISTORY: 1992 c 52 s 1. Prior: 1991 c 69 s 1; 1991 c 50 s 1; 1980 c 111 s 1;
1979 c 53 s 1; 1972 ex.s. c 153 s 17; 1969 ex.s. c 24 s 2; 1967 c 216 s 2.
Oregon Recreational Use Statute
OREGON REVISED STATUTES
TITLE 10. PROPERTY RIGHTS AND TRANSACTIONS
CHAPTER 105. PROPERTY RIGHTS
PUBLIC RECREATIONAL USE OF PRIVATE LANDS
ORS s 105.655 (1994)
105.655. Definitions for ORS 105.655 to 105.680.
As used in ORS 105.655 to 105.680:
(1) "Charge" means the admission price or fee asked by any owner in return
for invitation or permission to enter or go upon the owner's land.
(2) "Land" means agricultural land, rangeland, forestland, and lands
adjacent or contiguous to any bodies of water, watercourses or the ocean
shore as defined by ORS 390.605, including roads, bodies of water,
watercourses, private ways, private buildings and structures on such lands
and machinery or equipment on the land when attached to the realty, but
shall not include lands described in ORS 390.605 to 390.770. "Land" also
includes abandoned borrow pits, gravel or rock quarries not currently being
used for commercial or industrial purposes, whether or not such pits or
quarries are situated on agricultural land, rangeland, forestland or lands
adjacent or contiguous to the ocean shore as defined in ORS 390.605.
(3) "Owner" means the possessor of a fee title interest in any land, a
tenant, lessee, occupant or other person in possession of the land.
(4) "Recreational purpose" includes, but is not limited to, hunting,
fishing, swimming, boating, camping, picnicking, hiking, nature study, water
skiing, winter sports, viewing or enjoying historical, archaeological,
scenic or scientific sites and participating in a salmon and trout
enhancement project under ORS 496.430 to 496.455.
HISTORY: 1971 c.780 s 1; 1973 c.732 s 4; 1979 c.258 s 1; 1983 c.775 s 1;
1991 c.968 s 6
ORS s 105.660 (1994)
The Legislative Assembly hereby declares it is the public policy of the
State of Oregon to encourage owners of land to make their land available to
the public for recreational purposes by limiting their liability toward
persons entering thereon for such purposes and, in the case of permissive
use, by protecting their interests in their land from the extinguishment of
any such interest or the acquisition by the public of any right to use or
continue the use of such land for recreational purposes.
HISTORY: 1971 c.780 s 2; 1973 c.732 s 3
ORS s 105.665 (1994) Liabilities of owner of land used by public for
Except as otherwise provided in ORS 105.675:
(1) An owner of land owes no duty of care to keep the land safe for entry or
use by others for any recreational purpose or to give any warning of a
dangerous condition, use, structure or activity on the land to persons
entering thereon for any such purpose.
(2) An owner of land who either directly or indirectly invites or permits
any person to use the land for any recreational purpose without charge does
(a) Extend any assurance that the land is safe for any purpose;
(b) Confer upon such person the legal status of an invitee or licensee to
whom a duty of care is owed; or
(c) Assume responsibility for or incur liability for any injury, death or
loss to any person or property caused by an act or omission of that person.
HISTORY: 1971 c.780 s 3
ORS s 105.670 (1994)
105.670. ORS 105.665 applies to duties and liability of owner of land leased
to public body or public corporation.
Unless otherwise agreed in writing, ORS 105.665 shall be deemed applicable
to the duties and liability of an owner of land leased to the state or any
political subdivision thereof or to any public corporation for recreational
HISTORY: 1971 c.780 s 4
ORS s 105.675 (1994)
105.675. Liabilities of landowner unaffected in certain cases.
Nothing in ORS 105.655 to 105.680 limits in any way any liability of an
owner of land:
(1) For the willful, wanton and reckless failure of an owner of land to
guard or warn against a known dangerous structure or other improvement or a
known dangerous activity on the land; or
(2) For any injury suffered where the owner of land charges any person who
enters or goes upon the land for any recreational purpose, except that where
land is leased by the owner to the state or a political subdivision thereof
or to any public corporation, any consideration received by the owner for
such lease shall not be deemed a charge within the meaning of this
HISTORY: 1971 c.780 s 5; 1987 c.708 s 4
ORS s 105.677 (1994)
105.677. Permissive recreational use of land does not create easement;
preservation of preexisting public rights.
(1) An owner of land who either directly or indirectly invites or permits
any person to use the land for any recreational purpose without charge shall
not thereby give to such person or to other persons any right to continued
use of the land for any recreational purpose without the consent of the
(2) The fact that an owner of land allows the public to recreationally use
the land without posting or fencing or otherwise restricting use of the land
shall not raise a presumption that the landowner intended to dedicate or
otherwise give over to said public the right to continued use of said land.
(3) Nothing in this section shall be construed to diminish or divert any
public right acquired by dedication, prescription, grant, custom or
otherwise existing before October 5, 1973.
HISTORY: 1973 c.732 s 2
ORS s 105.680 (1994)
Nothing in ORS 105.655 to 105.680 shall be construed:
(1) To create a duty of care or basis for liability upon any owner of land
for injury to persons or property resulting from the use of such land for
(2) To relieve any person using the land of another for recreational
purposes from any obligation which the person may otherwise have, to
exercise care in use of the land in the activities of the person thereon or
from the legal consequences of failure of the person to employ such care.
HISTORY: 1971 c.780 s 6
From: LSimoni197@aol.com <LSimoni197@aol.com>
To: firstname.lastname@example.org <email@example.com>; firstname.lastname@example.org
Date: Saturday, October 17, 1998 3:19 PM
Subject: Re: NW rides and landowner protections
>Very well stated! I believe that there is risk for the land owner, or
>agency if negligence can be proven. I am not sure that the legislation you
>mentioned exists in any other State than CA.
Check it Out!
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