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Don’t slip up on the slopes

7 July 2015

Don’t slip up on the slopes

With the ski season now upon us, ACC is offering a friendly reminder to stay safe on the slopes and avoid ending up like the 13,500 people last year who injured themselves while skiing or snowboarding.

ACC’s Injury Prevention Portfolio Manager – Sport, Isaac Carlson, says “New Zealanders are lucky to have such easy access to ski-fields, but that means there is a greater chance of someone being injured.

“Most of these injuries last season were minor, such as strain, sprains and bruising, but there were also more serious injuries like fractures, dislocations and concussions.

“Skiing and snowboarding are a great way to keep active during the winter months, but it’s important to keep in mind that these activities are physically demanding and can involve ever-changing terrain. Following the safety guidelines and not pushing yourself too hard too fast is a must.”

In 2014, ACC paid out $20.5 million for skiing- and snowboarding-related injuries.

To reduce the risk of injury, Mr Carlson recommends the following:

· start building up your fitness before the season starts, especially if you’re not physically active on a regular basis
· warm up before you start skiing or snowboarding, as you would before any physical activity
· ideally, get lessons from a qualified instructor - they can teach you important techniques such as how to fall safely.
· make sure you’re familiar with, and you follow, the ‘Snow responsibility Code’, endorsed by the Ski Areas Association of New Zealand.

Snow responsibility code

1. Stay in control at all times

Know your ability, start easy, be able to stop and avoid other people.

2. People below you have the right of way

The skier or boarder downhill of you has the right of way, also look above before entering a trail.

3. Obey all ski area signage

Signs are there for your safety, keep out of closed areas.

4. Look before you leap

Scope jumps first, ensure the area is clear of others, use a spotter on blind jumps.

5. Stop where you can be seen

When stopping, try to move to the side of the trail and where you can be seen from above.

6. Don’t lose what you use

Equipment must be secured while walking or stashing.

7. Stay on scene

If you are involved in, or witness, an accident, remain at the scene and identify yourself to Ski Patrol.

8. Respect gets respect

From the lift line, to the slopes and through the park.


© Scoop Media

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