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Safety authority reminding riders to stay safe on the lifts this year

With the winter weather on its way, BC Safety Authority (BCSA) is advising British Columbians to have fun and stay safe on chairlifts this year.

Each year there are preventable accidents and injuries involving lift equipment, something BCSA Senior Safety Officer David Looney says is avoidable if riders follow safety rules and pay attention to signage.

“When loading and unloading from any type of ski lift, passengers should put their mobile phones away and pay attention to lift operators' instructions and surroundings,” Looney says, adding that the BCSA is currently studying the use of electronic devices on chairlifts to see just how much they contribute to accidents.

In BC, 60% of chairlift related injuries are caused by passenger behaviour, making it the biggest source of accidents by far.

Chairlifts aren’t the only area of concern either, as there are also a number of accidents and injuries from sustained on the seemingly innocent T-bar.

“Ropeway users are strongly reminded when riding a surface T-bar or platter to stay in the towpath,” says Looney. “Over the years, serious incidents have occurred because of passengers riding out of the designated towpath.”

You can keep your lift experience safe by following some of these tips:

  • Reading instructional signs and following the safety 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.
  • Loading children next to the lift attendant.
More information about lift safety is available here.

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