What have we learned? | AspenTimes.com

What have we learned?

Dear Editor:One of the worst ski experiences one can have is to watch helplessly as someone dangles and then falls from a chairlift. I witnessed a young boy fall off the Alpine Springs lift a number of years ago, and it still has an impact on me.What appears to be a common element to both events is that the lift attendants were not immediately aware of what was happening. As the father of a 5-year-old, I know that most of the time an attendant will assist and make sure your child is on the chair. However, there are times when you and your child, or just your child, are on your own.Some recommendations to make things safer would be: Increase awareness (or number) of lift operators to an acceptable level especially when small children are riding; have a simple emergency harness on each chair that could be quickly and easily used in the case of a dangler; turn down the music so if someone is yelling to the attendants that there is a problem they will be able to hear; have a “jump bag” like they use in stunts already deployed at the first tower.Whether or not anyone likes any of these suggestions, I think most people would agree that we can do better than, “There’s not anything else that’s going to happen.” If a child falls 50 feet off a chairlift, there has to be something that can be learned.Fred DickSnowmass Village

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