While it seemed like a good idea for a hilly winter ski resort to pivot to a “gravity” mountain bike course during the greener summer months, the idea was a crash course in risk management for a Wisconsin company forced to shut down operations due to insurability.
As posted on its Instagram page, Little Switzerland in Slinger made the decision to close its business during the off-season after its insurance company canceled coverage for the 10-year-old bike park, saying “alternative insurance options would not make the park financially viable going forward.”
After facing backlash, including fans saying they want to boycott the unnamed insurer, the owners chimed in, thanking fans for their support and saying they “had options, including a higher rate applied to our entire business, or insuring the bike park separately.”
“The hard reality is that this additional premium wipes out the small profit the bike park generated, while exposing us to the risk of nuclear judgments outside of our insurance coverage. Unfortunately, the risk is not worth the reward,”; the owners wrote. “Mountain biking and skiing do not involve the same level of risk. Our incident rate is significantly higher in gravity mountain biking than in skiing. Your sport involves risk… and a significant amount of it. Almost all of you reading this post understand and take responsibility for it. Unfortunately, not everyone does.”