Mountain Safety – It’s Everyone’s Responsibility
Vermont’s ski areas are committed to safety every day in their operations, but it’s important for skiers and riders to understand that they have an important safety role, too. Learning and practicing Your Responsibility Code, being aware of your surroundings, using common sense and making good decisions will help you and other guests have a safe and fun day on the mountain.
Skiing and snowboarding are active, dynamic and exciting sports and they have inherent risks that cannot be eliminated, including risk of serious injury and death – this is why it’s important for you to be aware; know and follow Your Responsibility Code; wear a helmet and make sure you know how to load and ride a lift safely.
Many skiing and snowboarding incidents are a result of participants traveling too fast or above their ability or colliding with objects or other guests. You can reduce the possibility of injury by slowing down and being able to avoid objects and people at all times.
It's worthwhile to take a few minutes to educate yourself about safety on the hill. Here are some important safety resources:
By using common sense and practicing the seven points of Your Responsibility Code, you and others can have a safer day on the mountain.
- Always stay in control and be able to stop or avoid other people or objects.
- People ahead of you have the right of way. It is your responsibility to avoid them.
- You must not stop where you will obstruct a trail or are not visible from above.
- Whenever starting downhill or merging onto a trail, look uphill and yield to others.
- Always use devices to help prevent runaway equipment.
- Observe all posted signs and warnings. Keep off closed trails and out of closed areas.
- Prior to using any lift, you must have the knowledge and ability to load, ride and unload safely.
Ski areas are committed to lift safety and helping educate guests about the skills necessary to load and unload lifts safely. Before riding a lift, it’s your responsibility to know how to load, ride and unload a lift safely. Riding lifts responsibly will help you have a safer day on the mountain.
Check out these helpful resources with information about safely riding lifts:
- Kidsonlifts.org for kids and parents
Wear a Helmet
Ski Vermont promotes the use of helmets on the slopes. We recommend you wear a helmet - but it’s important to remember that your helmet alone will not reduce your risk of injury. Wearing a helmet while skiing and riding in a controlled manner and following Your Responsibility Code are all important to have a safe day on the mountain.
For more information on the benefits and limitations of helmets, proper sizing and more, visit: LidsOnKids.org.
Ride Another Day and Tips for Avoiding Collisions
Visit https://nspserves.org/ride-another-day/ and watch this important video:
Complementing the Responsibility Code, #RideAnotherDay promotes three actions every skier and rider can take to help keep themselves and those around them safer on the slopes.
1. Be Ready
Be ready to slow down or avoid objects or other people at any time. Ski and ride in such a way that you are always able to control yourself regardless of conditions and avoid others and objects you may encounter on the run.
2. Stay Alert
Stay alert to what’s going on around you, especially other skiers and riders. Being aware of those around and changing conditions will help you have a fun and safe day on the hill.
3. Plan Ahead
Ease up at blind spots, check uphill when merging onto trails, and give other skiers plenty of room when passing. Look out for spots on the run where traffic merges or you can't see what's coming next. If you are unfamiliar with a run, take it easy the first time down it and make note of places where you'll want to slow down, such as trail intersections and rollers. Give other skiers and riders plenty of room, especially if you are passing them. There's plenty of space out there, so there's no need to crowd other skiers and riders.
By doing these three things every run, you'll be helping to keep the slopes safe and enjoyable, for you and everyone else.
Park Smart: Terrain Park Safety
Follow these safety tips to make your time in the park safer and more fun for you and other users:
START SMALL - Work your way up. Build your skills.
MAKE A PLAN - Every feature. Every time.
ALWAYS LOOK - Before you drop.
RESPECT - The features and other users.
TAKE IT EASY - Know your limits. Land on your feet.
Check out this Park Smart video for more safety tips:
For more on safety in snowsports, please visit NSAA.org