BC Safety Authority (BCSA) is advising British Columbians to have fun and stay safe on chairlifts as the ski season opens this winter. Every year, accidents and injuries involving lift equipment can be prevented if skiers and riders follow the safety rules and pay attention to signage.
“Chairlift riders need to be aware of the technology behind this equipment, the height of the chairlifts and the power of the machines,” says Jason Gill, BCSA passenger ropeways safety manager. “Rules about riding ski lifts are there to keep people safe and help prevent an injury that could be the end of your season.”
Keep your ski lift experience safe by:
• Reading safety and instructional signs and following the directions provided before riding any ski lift.- Not bouncing, turning around, reaching out or trying to make equipment adjustments while riding chairlifts.
• Keeping your chairlift restraining bar down until instructed to lift it by safety signage or lift operators.- Staying in the track on all surface lifts such as T-Bars.
Passenger behavior is by far the major source of lift-related injury in our province with 50 per cent of incidents resulting from inappropriate or unruly passenger activity.
Injuries can occur if lift equipment is not used safely and these injuries can be serious, but they are preventable.
“Chairlifts in B.C. are very safe and most incidents involve rider error, usually during loading or unloading from the lift,” says Gill. “The number of reported injuries from passenger ropeways has declined steadily every year since 2009.”
“Parents are encouraged to discuss ski lift safety with their kids and teens before heading up to the slopes this winter. Be sure they know to follow the instructions of lift attendants, adhere to all of the rules on posted signage, and do not engage in horseplay.”
For more information about lift safety, visit BCSA’s website at: www.safetyauthority.ca/dos-donts-have-safe-ride
BCSA is mandated to oversee the safe installation and operation of technical systems and equipment in BC, including passenger ropeways such as ski lifts, gondolas, tramways, rope tows and passenger conveyors.