Safety the skier’s job |

Safety the skier’s job

When Snowmass Ski Area General Manager Doug Mackenzie was asked last week if he was worried about the potential liability problems that comes with opening extreme terrain off Sheer Bliss, he paused for a minute.

Then he pointed out that skiers are responsible for themselves, and they need to choose their runs to match their ability.

Backing that opinion up is the Colorado Skier Safety Act.

“Under the Act,” according to a December 2000 press release from Colorado attorney general’s office, “skiers’ duties include skiing within one’s own ability, maintaining control of speed and course at all times, maintaining a proper lookout so as to avoid other skiers and objects, and to refrain from conduct which may cause injury to others.

“Other statutory duties,” the press release explains, “include not skiing in areas marked as closed, understanding and heeding all posted information and warnings, yielding to skiers already moving, not skiing while impaired by alcohol or drugs, failing to give name and current address when involved in an injury accident, and knowingly trespassing on lands adjacent to a ski area when such lands are closed and are marked accordingly.”

Skier safety is a big issue. Just this week a 15-year-old lost consciousness and was airlifted out of Aspen after landing on his head while skiing in the terrain park below Coney Glade lift at Snowmass. And he was wearing a helmet.

Recognizing that skiing and snowboarding can be dangerous for even the most cautious skiers and snowboarders, the Aspen Skiing Co. posts a safety tip of the day on all four mountains. The chairlift towers now also have signs providing safety tips.

They’re simple and make a lot of sense, so keep your eye out for those bits of wisdom.

Support Local Journalism

Support Local Journalism

Readers around Aspen and Snowmass Village make the Aspen Times’ work possible. Your financial contribution supports our efforts to deliver quality, locally relevant journalism.

Now more than ever, your support is critical to help us keep our community informed about the evolving coronavirus pandemic and the impact it is having locally. Every contribution, however large or small, will make a difference.

Each donation will be used exclusively for the development and creation of increased news coverage.


Start a dialogue, stay on topic and be civil.
If you don't follow the rules, your comment may be deleted.

User Legend: iconModerator iconTrusted User