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Though skiing is great fun, you could be in an unexpected accident, fall, or get injured by crashing into people or objects. It's important to be prepared and know what action to take in case something like this happens.

Always stay with a few people

At a ski resort it's best to be with at least one other person. That way, if one of you becomes unable to move due to injury or an accident, the other one can offer support and call for help. If you're skiing as a family, make sure the adults always stay with the children. Safety aside, skiing is simply much more fun if you enjoy it with others.

If you're injured

If you get injured on-piste and can't move, locate the injury or injuries and check how bad they are. To prevent further accidents, move over to one side of the run if you can. If you can't move, take off your skis and stick them upright in the snow in an "X" shape to alert people skiing towards you from above, and to help the ski patrol to find you. If you are with someone, ask them to call for rescue. If not, ask people around you for help.

Ask the ski patrol to rescue

You need to go to the ski patrol building to ask for rescue assistance. Tell the patrol how badly the person is injured, and the location. If you can tell the patrol the name of the run and whereabouts on the run the injured person is, rescue will be quicker.

If you're near a lift station, ask the lift staff for help

The patrol building may be too far away, or you may not even know where it is. If you're near a lift station, go there to ask for help. The lift staff will contact the ski patrol for rescue.

After you're rescued

After you're rescued, you will be given first-aid treatment at the patrol building. If you need hospital treatment, ask the patrols where the nearest hospital is and go there. Call 119 for an ambulance if it's an emergency.
If you get into an accident in an out-of-bound area, you will be considered to have done so at your own risk. You could be charged enormous rescue fees, so always stick to the rules and manners when you are at a ski resort.
photo & text : Chiho Kuriyama

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