Safety Week kicking off |

Safety Week kicking off

Lauren Glendenning
Vail, CO Colorado

EAGLE COUNTY, Colorado – With a sport that is inherently dangerous, ski resorts across the country are promoting safety this week to remind everyone how to avoid danger on the mountain.

“Play it Safe, Play all Season” is Vail Resorts’ new safety-campaign motto, announced by the company in December, which has added safety signs at each of the company’s six resorts to keep people safe and also remind skiers and riders that those who don’t follow the rules can lose their ski passes for the season.

National Safety Awareness Week began Saturday, with Vail and Beaver Creek hosting various activities and events to kick off the week. The Safety Week is part of the National Ski Areas Association’s safety-awareness program.

Programs range from helmet-use education to terrain-park safety to knowing and following the skier responsibility code. Beaver Creek kicked off the day with an EpicMix safety booth, where skiers and snowboarders could get their pictures taken with the new Play It Safe campaign signs.

Vail Police officers helped kick off safety week at Vail Mountain by registering ski and snowboard gear. Vail Mountain safety staff later hosted a scavenger hunt for children in Chaos Canyon, in which little skiers and snowboarders had to answer safety-related questions correctly in order to get small prizes.

Safety is something that isn’t taken lightly by the ski company. The point of the Play it Safe campaign is to warn skiers and snowboarders that there are consequences for not playing by the rules.

Anne Borch, a Beaver Creek homeowner, said she would like to see more done about unsafe skiers and snowboarders. She feels the slopes have gotten “treacherous and risky” and that extra signs aren’t necessarily going to change anything.

Vail Resorts Co-President Blaise Carrig said of the Play it Safe campaign that guests have told the ski company that safety is a key component of their mountain experiences.

“… Their comfort level on the mountain relative to safety is one of the most important things we can affect,” he said.

The company’s Yellow Jacket program provides the eyes and ears that catch some of the folks who break the rules, but the new signage around the mountains, as well as more communication from the resort staff in general, is meant to remind people all the time that safety should be a priority for everyone.

“Our focus is on both skiing and riding in control and slow in the designated ‘slow zones,'” Carrig said. “Skiing and snowboarding are activities enjoyed by young and old alike, and the more we can encourage responsible skiing and snowboarding, the more fun we’ll all have on the mountain.”

Community Editor Lauren Glendenning can be reached at 970-748-2983 or

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