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January 20, 2013
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Vail Mountain celebrates safety week

VAIL - From its humble beginnings with less than a dozen ski patrollers on staff in 1962, Vail Mountain's safety team has grown tremendously during the past 50 years implementing numerous new programs and initiatives to enhance the safety of guests and employees on the mountain. This year, Vail prepares to celebrate 50 years of safety as National Safety Awareness Week returns through Jan. 27, encouraging skiers and snowboarders, guests and employees, to "Play It Safe. Play all Season," referring to Vail Resorts' enhanced slope safety campaign. The comprehensive campaign was introduced last season across Vail Resorts and is aimed at addressing slope safety by communicating to guests how they can ski and snowboard more responsibly and still have a great time. New this year, the campaign has been updated to include the universal yellow caution signage that all guests, including international guests, can easily recognize on the slopes. This includes updated signs across the resort in critical locations such as slow zones, terrain park exits and areas where trails merge, plus a new "rest area" initiative to help guests understand where to stop on popular runs. "Our goal this season with the enhanced 'Play it Safe. Play All Season' campaign is to grab the attention of guests and employees with a simple, visually recognizable safety message on the snow," said Steve Clark, assistant director of Vail Mountain Safety. "In addition to what's new, guests and employees are also encouraged to interact with daily activities and events throughout National Safety Awareness Week that tie back to the season-long 'Play It Safe. Play All Season' safety message." Vail, which has been recognized by the National Ski Areas Association for its safety efforts for more than a decade, also plans to continue highlighting the importance of always abiding by "Your Responsibility Code" on the slopes. Vail will also host various events and activities throughout Safety Week to effectively promote and communicate the importance of slope safety to guests and employees. New this year during Safety Week, any guest who approaches a mountain safety team member and correctly recites the responsibility code will be entered into a raffle to win a GoPro camera at the end of the week.Guests are invited to join staff from Vail Mountain Safety, Vail Ski Patrol and Community Guest Service at the Vail Mountain Safety Yurt at Henry's Hut daily from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. to pick up safety giveaways, brush up on ski and snowboard culture and the history of safety and get an EpicMix photo taken with one of Vail's avalanche rescue dogs, Henry, Mookie or Rocky. Guests can also participate in daily sweeps with Vail Ski Patrol by signing up at Patrol Headquarters, located at the top of the Mountaintop Express Lift (No. 4). Monday10:30 a.m.: High-angle avalanche rescue demonstration off the Chair 4 cliffs.10 a.m.-1 p.m.: Tips on knee and body health from physical therapists at Axis Sports Medicine at Mid-Vail.Tuesday10:30 a.m.: Avalanche rescue dog demonstration outside of Henry's Hut, between the top of the Mountaintop Express Lift (No. 4) and High Noon Express Lift (No. 5). 11 a.m.: Flight for Life helicopter landing at the top of the Avanti Express Lift (No. 2).11 a.m.: Safety tips from the Ski & Snowboard School. Meet outside The 10th at Mid-Vail.Wednesday11 a.m.: Avalanche beacon training and challenge. Meet at Beacon Basin at the top of the Sourdough Express Lift (No. 14).11 a.m.: Safety tips from the Ski & Snowboard School. Meet outside The 10th at Mid-Vail.Thursday11 a.m.: Safety tips from the Ski & Snowboard School. Meet outside The 10th at Mid-Vail.11 a.m.-3 p.m.: Binding checks and helmet fittings with Vail Sports. Meet at Henry's Hut at the top of the Mountaintop Express Lift (No. 4).Friday11 a.m.: Avalanche safety introduction with Vail Ski Patrol. Meet at Henry's Hut at the top of the Mountaintop Express Lift (No. 4) and High Noon Express Lift (No. 5).11 a.m.-3 p.m.: "Smart Style" with the Vail Ski & Snowboard School: Join freestyle instructors from the Vail Ski & Snowboard School as they review the importance of the "Smart Style" Terrain Park Safety Initiative in the Bwana and Golden Peak terrain parks.10 a.m.-1 p.m.: Tips on knee and body health from physical therapists at Axis Sports Medicine at Mid-Vail.Saturday10 a.m.-1 p.m.: Chaos Canyon Children's Safety Scavenger Hunt: Join Vail Mountain Safety staff in Chaos Canyon for a family-friendly scavenger hunt. Little rippers must answer a series of safety questions before receiving a small prize at the conclusion of the hunt.10 a.m.-1 p.m.: Tips on knee and body health from physical therapists at Axis Sports Medicine at Mid-Vail.Sunday10 a.m.-1 p.m.: Chaos Canyon Children's Safety Scavenger Hunt: Join Vail Mountain Safety staff in Chaos Canyon for a family-friendly scavenger hunt. Little rippers must answer a series of safety questions before receiving a small prize at the conclusion of the hunt.10 a.m.-1 p.m.: Tips on knee and body health from physical therapists at Axis Sports Medicine at Mid-Vail. Other events, activities and communications may be added throughout the week, and all events are subject to change. Check with Vail Ski Patrol or Mountain Safety personnel about daily activities or call 970-754-4610 for more information.


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The VailDaily Updated Jan 20, 2013 06:30PM Published Jan 20, 2013 06:28PM Copyright 2013 The VailDaily. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.