US

Liability concerns leave cities uneasy as sledders whoosh down snow-covered slopes

FILE - In this  Dec. 11, 2013 file photo Zoe Reisen,10, of Dubuque, Iowa, sleds down a hill at Allison-Henderson Park on in Dubuque, Iowa. Faced with the potential bills from people who are injured sledding, Dubuque is one of the cities across the country the is opting to close hills rather than face the risk of large liability claims. (AP Photo/The Telegraph Herald, Jessica Reilly, File)

FILE - In this Dec. 11, 2013 file photo Zoe Reisen,10, of Dubuque, Iowa, sleds down a hill at Allison-Henderson Park on in Dubuque, Iowa. Faced with the potential bills from people who are injured sledding, Dubuque is one of the cities across the country the is opting to close hills rather than face the risk of large liability claims. (AP Photo/The Telegraph Herald, Jessica Reilly, File)  (The Associated Press)

Part of the fun of sledding is the risk that comes with flying down a steep hill.

But that risk leaves cities open to potential bills from sledding injuries, and some have opted to close hills rather than risk large liability claims.

No one tracks how many cities have banned or limited sledding, but the list grows every year. One of the latest is in Dubuque, Iowa, where officials are moving ahead with a plan to ban sledding in all but two of its 50 parks.

Parks manager Marie Ware says Dubuque is hilly and the risk is too prevalent.

In meetings leading up to the ban, City Council members lamented the move but say it's the only responsible choice given liability concerns and demands from Dubuque's insurance carrier.