The Selwyn Snowfields Ski Patrol is made up of paid and voluntary professionals who are trained specifically in the safety and administration of first aid in mountain environments. The goal of the ski patrol is to maintain high standards of safety for the guests at Selwyn Snowfields by maintaining mountain signage and safety equipment, promoting awareness of safety issues and serving the public when required in the rescue and first aid treatment of injured skiers/snowboarders and other visitors to Selwyn Snowfields.
A Day in the Life of a Selwyn Snowfields Ski Patroller
7:30a – 8:30am – Patrol conducts a sweep of the mountain before it is opened to the public to check for potential hazards and to determine which runs are safe to open. Any hazards or unsafe runs are marked or sectioned off.
8:30am to 4:00pm – Patrollers constantly ski the mountain assisting guests where ever required. It may be as simple as helping someone put on their skis after falling off the T-Bar, or giving someone directions to a run or as serious as evacuating an injured skier/or snowboarder from a run and administering first aid. The ski patrol are always there to help in any way they can.
4:00pm – 5:00pm – Patrollers once again sweep the mountain ensuring all guests are safely off the mountain before closing the lifts down. All resort signage and fencing is removed so the snow makers and groomers are able to prepare the mountain for the following day.
What can you do to help?
There are many steps you can take before arriving and during your visit to the snow to reduce the risk of requiring the services of the Ski Patrol.
Pre-Season Fitness – Skiing/boarding are high aerobic activities and require flexibility, strength, endurance, speed and quick reflexes. A pre-season fitness program will enhance your physical condition in these areas. By being fitter you will not only be able to ski/board longer, harder and better, but you will also lessen the chance of injury to yourself and other skiers or boarders.
In any fitness program, the following points are vital:
- Start your training well before the ski season or your trip.
- Training sessions must be regular and frequent – at least three times per week.
- Always warm up before an exercise session.
- Children, as well as adults, will benefit from a pre-season fitness program.
Eat well- Make sure you eat well both prior to and during skiing - many skiers get injured due to fatigue that could have been avoided by a rest and a meal.
Rest - If you are tired, have a rest. Fatigue = Injuries and accidents.
Identify Ski Patrol & Facilities - Familiarise yourself with the Ski Patrol uniform and the location of the Ski Patrol Room.
Subscribe to the Ambulance Service - Even a short trip can be costly.
Stick together – Always ski with a partner and if in a group, carefully arrange, and stick to, meeting times and places - especially at the end of the day.
Follow the code - The Alpine Responsibility Code sets out the responsibilities of all skiers and snowboarders whilst using the mountain so as to reduce the risk of accidents. It is important all visitors familiarise themselves with the code not only for the safety of themselves but other guests on the mountain as well.
By taking a few precautions you and your family and friends are sure to enjoy all the mountain has to offer, and if you see one of our Ski Patrollers next time you’re at the snow be sure to give them a smile – they’re there for your safety!