Stay Safe on the Slopes with National Safety Awareness Week
Sarah Neith, firstname.lastname@example.org
Vermont ski resorts welcome skiers and riders to participate in National Safety Awareness Week, January 19 – 27, 2013. Resorts will host a variety of programs, promotions and events focusing on helmet use, the skiers’ and riders’ responsibility code, out-of-bounds skiing and terrain park safety. The National Ski Areas Association is also hosting a weekly poster contest. For more information on the program, please visit www.nsaa.org/safety-programs/national-safety-week/
Don’t Know? Don’t Go!
When the snow falls heavily like it did over the holidays, backcountry skiing and riding can look particularly attractive – but off-piste exploration can come at a high price. Ski Vermont encourages skiers and riders to stick to the trails and in-bounds. Skiing in the woods without the proper knowledge of the terrain or proper equipment can be devastating, as skiers and riders can easily get lost or disoriented. Keep it simple: Don’t go if you don’t know! Still interested in skiing off-piste? Call resorts ahead of time and ask about possible guided tours.
PHaT, Protect Your Head at All Times/Protect Your Head on All Terrain, is a helmet advocacy program supported by Vermont Children's Hospital at Fletcher Allen Health Care and works with the National Ski Patrol and other partners to encourage all skiers and riders to wear helmets so they have a safer experience on the slopes. Learn more and enter raffles to win a free helmet at upcoming PHAT Events:
- January 19th - Bromley Mountain Resort
- January 20th - Okemo Mountain Resort
- January 26th - Bolton Valley Resort
- January 27th - Stowe Mountain Resort
- January 29th - Mad River Glen
- February 2nd - Smugglers' Notch Resort
- February 3rd - Jay Peak Resort
- February 12th - Okemo Mountain Resort
Vermont Ski Resorts are getting into the safety spirit. Here are a few of the initiatives and events that you’ll find at our resorts during National Safety Week:
At Bolton Valley, skiing and riding safety doesn’t just stop with Know the Code; it takes using your head to stay safe and have fun on the slopes. During National Safety Week this year, Bolton will continue to educate skiers and snowboarders about being safe and using common sense on the slopes. In addition, a 20 percent discount will be given off all helmets in the retail shop, with 30 percent off helmets for Bolton season pass holders. For more details, visit www.boltonvalley.com.
Killington Resort and Pico Mountain
Killington Resort and Pico Mountain are offering skiers and riders one free lift ticket with the purchase of a new helmet at any Killington Sports location or at the Pico Sports Shop to promote National Safety Awareness Week, January 19-27. In partnership with the National Ski Areas Association, Killington encourages slope safety awareness with special events, giveaways and contests that help educate skiers and riders about responsible behavior on the slopes.
Mad River Glen
Mad River Glen’s Ski Patrol acknowledged a century of safety service this fall. Two members of the Mad River Glen Ski Patrol, Geordie Hall and Lee Minkler, were each recognized at the Patrol’s refresher this fall for their 50 years of service to the National Ski Patrol and to Mad River Glen.
Geordie, who started his patrolling career at Mad River Glen as a teenager, is also an Outdoor Emergency Care instructor and a member of the Mad River Valley Ambulance Service. Along with his patrol duties Geordie has served as a trustee to the Mad River Glen Cooperative’s Board and was instrumental in the fundraising effort for the historic restoration of Mad River Glen’s Single Chair lift.
Lee, who joined the NSP in 1962, began his career at Mad River as a pro patroller and served as Patrol Director during the 1970’s. Lee was presented with his national Appointment in 1976, this is the high individual award bestowed upon a patroller by the National Ski Patrol. Both Geordie and Lee are Senior Alpine Patrollers and deserve kudos for their contributions to the Mad River Glen community over the past half century.
At Magic Mountain, they have an open boundary-to-boundary ski policy which allows the more adventurous to explore woods between the trails. With over 100 acres of gladed tree skiing and riding, Magic encourages our customer to always think safety-first, and that means taking precautions when you going "off-piste". Magic asks skiers and riders to:
- Always bring a communication device and note the ski area's phone number.
- Always ski and ride with someone else, preferably three or more.
- Always wear a helmet.
- Always tell someone when and where you are going--even if it is a "secret stash."
- Check in with ski patrollers for the latest conditions.
- Do not access roped off/closed terrain as you can put potential rescuers in danger as well.
And of course, always be courteous to your fellow skiers and riders - that includes "no poaching" some else's line if they are there first! Magic wishes every one a safe ski adventure.
Okemo Mountain Resort
Okemo commemorates National Safety Awareness Week with a host of fun events and activities to help educate skiers and riders of all ages and promote on-mountain safety.
Safety Week starts with Okemo’s annual Helmet Head Contest, a celebration of that matted mess of hair that occurs only when skiers and riders remove that most important piece of safety equipment – their helmet. Find Okemo’s Helmet Head Photographer on the mountain and the best Helmet Head wins two lift tickets.
Vermont’s own PHAT team (Protect Your Head at All Times/Protect Your Head on All Terrain) will be returning to Okemo from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m., on Sunday, Jan. 20. The Vermont Snow Sports Research Team, a partnership of Vermont Children's Hospital at Fletcher Allen Health Care and the University of Vermont College of Medicine will be on location to help educate skiers and riders about helmet use.
On Jan. 21, Deep River Snacks gets in on the action. In addition to sponsoring Okemo’s Park Safety Program, Deep River Snacks is teaming up with Okemo for a fun and educational Safety Scavenger Hunt with delicious prizes.
Smugglers’ Notch Resort
Smugglers’ Notch Resort will offer a variety of activities as part of National Safety Awareness Week. “We’re excited to include our guests, employees and the local community in this year’s Safety Awareness Week,” says Kiri Moore, the resort’s safety director. “Our goal is to communicate how important safety awareness is to all of us - and convey that message in a fun way.”
Children in the resort’s Discovery Dynamos (ages 3-5) and Adventure Rangers (ages 6-10) ski and ride instructional programs will enjoy scavenger hunts following clues related to the skiers’ and riders’ Responsibility Code. Smugglers’ in-house television channel will broadcast safety tips.
For employees, an additional outing will be added to the staff wellness program that includes hikes, snowshoe treks, and yoga classes. “To encourage employees to continue to follow best safety practices as the winter season goes on, we’ll be doing footwear and office ergonomic checks, spot training on common challenges such as preventing slips and falls, and distributing coupons for healthy snacks,” notes Moore. Employees who successfully complete safety puzzles will be entered into a drawing.
Visitors to Smugglers’ will also be able to view posters made by children in the local elementary school who were invited to take part in a contest to depict one of the elements of SmartStyle or Your Responsibility Code. (www.smuggs.com/skivtw; 855-814-7325)
Stratton Mountain Resort
Stratton is home to several innovative safety programs to help skiers and riders enjoy the mountain more. During National Winter Safety week, Stratton celebrates being safe on the slopes with a safety scavenger hunt (be sure to bring your helmet) and safety trivia. Other activities center around Stratton’s successful Safety Education Session (SES) program and ICE, a unique emergency contact registration, and encourage guests to use these programs.
All winter, Stratton is dedicated to providing a safe and fun experience for every guest. The resort now issues around 13,000 SES passes every season, after being one of the first to require an education session for park skier sand riders. No other resort has an “In Case of Emergency” (ICE) program, which allows our fully staffed medical clinic to easily contact family members. And, a whopping 90% of Stratton’s skiers and riders wear helmets, as compared to the national average of 56%. Talk about riding PHaT.
Stowe Mountain Resort
Like its rich history, the Triple A Program at Stowe Mountain Resort is continuously inspired by generations of mountain lifestyle enthusiasts. Originally developed by Stowe Mountain Resort on-snow managers to enhance safety on the mountain, the program became the company’s guiding principles.
- Attitude – Respect yourself, others and our environment.
- Awareness – Sensitivity to your own immediate surrounds and the needs of others
- Accountability – Ownership of your personal actions and the continued preservation of Stowe’s unique qualities.
With thousands of acres of mountain playground from Lincoln Peak to Mt. Ellen, Sugarbush Resort is a place where adventurous souls can have some serious fun - but the responsibility to enjoy it safely is of paramount concern. At Sugarbush safety comes first. Whether you are exploring the Slide Brook backcountry, cruising groomers or dipping into one of 20 wooded areas on the trail map, make skiing and riding safely your top priority. Be sure to never ski or ride alone in wooded areas, always tell someone where you are skiing or riding and know how to get help in the case of an emergency
Sugarbush employees including Ski Patrol, Mountain Operations, Instructors and Ambassadors are available to answer any questions about how to stay safe while at Sugarbush. Mountain information can be found on our Snow Report and Sugarbush App that can help you safely navigate your way around the mountain. Importantly, guests of Sugarbush should know the Responsibility Code and while in the terrain parks practice the Smart Style program. Following these easy steps will help ensure all guests have a safe and enjoyable visit to Sugarbush.
Trapp Family Lodge
Equipment Safety is always a high priority when talking about National Safety Awareness. Equipment maintenance lies at the heart of any safe ski vacation. Regular use and its subsequent extended wear can damage equipment. Regular ski tuning is an essential component in keeping equipment in top operating condition. It keeps things running efficiently and reduces the risk of injury due to broken equipment. Trapp Family Lodge Cross Country Center offers equipment tuning, inspections, repairs, and parts replacement. www.trappfamily.com
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