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New York State Department of Labor

VIDEO, AUDIO and PHOTOS: State Labor Department and Olympic Regional Development Authority Announce All Open New York State Ski Areas Have Been Inspected and Are Ready for Business

New Yorkers Encouraged to Ski Safely at any of the State’s 52 Ski Areas, the Most in the Nation

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Albany, NY (December 19, 2014) -

The State Labor Department and Olympic Regional Development Authority today announced that New York’s open ski areas have all been inspected – they are ready for New Yorkers to safely hit the slopes – and offered safety tips for both skiers and ski operators for this ski season.

VIDEO, AUDIO and PHOTOS highlighting ski tourism and safety are available on YouTube HERE and available for download in high quality versions (h264, mp4), including b-roll and full interviews, HERE.

“It’s a great time to take advantage of New York’s ski areas,” said State Labor Commissioner Peter M. Rivera. “Whether you’re on the bunny slope or the double black diamond, get out there this season and enjoy a great winter pastime with your friends and family. I’m happy to proclaim that New York ski areas are inspected and now open for business.”

New York State is home to 52 ski areas – more than any other state in the nation, according to Scott Brandi, President of Ski Areas of New York.

The State Department of Labor recently completed the inspection of open ski areas in New York State, including the safety inspection of all ski lifts. Lift inspections include checking parts for structural integrity, ensuring brakes function properly, reviewing emergency evacuation procedures, inspecting loading and unloading areas, testing emergency power systems to evacuate the lift in the event of an electrical failure, and verifying that all third party inspections on the wire ropes, structural components and carriers have been performed.

The Department of Labor’s trail inspections are now underway.

Tips for passengers as they board rope tows, chair lifts and t-bar lifts:

  • Familiarize yourself with the device. 
  • Remain on the device if it stops moving.
  • Board and get off the device only at points designated by the ski area operator.
  • Don’t throw anything off the device that could harm other skiers. 
  • Do not wear loose clothing or accessories that can become tangled in the device.  

For skiers and snowboarders: 

  • Do not ski or snowboard in any closed area, trails or slopes. 
  • Don’t ski or snowboard beyond your limits and abilities. 
  • Abide by the instructions of the ski area operator.  
  • Ski or snowboard in control at all times.  Don’t leave the scene of an accident that results in personal injury to another party until the ski area operator arrives, unless you deem it necessary to leave in order to get help. 
  • Don’t stop on a slope or trail in a place where stopping can cause a collision. 
  • Don’t remove, deface, alter or damage signage maintained by the ski operator. 

For ski area operators: 

  • Conduct employee training sessions at least once before the beginning of each season for operators of trail maintenance equipment, passenger tramway attendants and ski personnel charged with evacuating passengers from passenger tramways. 
  • Equip all trail maintenance vehicles with flashing or rotating lights. 
  • Post proper signage, including a “Warning to Skiers,” of the hazards associated with skiing. 
  • Mark with crossed poles things like snow-making equipment, electrical outlets, timing equipment, pipes, etc. 
  • In a central location, maintain information on the location of lifts, slopes and trails.  Information should include the status of each trail (open or closed), the location of emergency communications or medical equipment and the degree of difficulty of the trails (easier, more difficult, most difficult).
  • Inspect each open ski slope at least twice a day to note and post general conditions, such as ice patches or bare spots.
  • Develop, maintain and enforce a written policy involving reckless conduct on the slopes. 

To learn more about state laws concerning ski safety, please visit the Labor Department’s web site at www.labor.ny.gov/ski.  To report safety concerns at a particular ski area, please call (518) 457-2131.

For more information about the New York State Olympic Regional Development Authority managed resorts visit: www.whitefacelakeplacid.com, www.goremountain.com and www.belleayre.com. To find a ski resort near you, visit: www.iskiny.com.

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