Skiing Deaths This Year / Helmets and Skiing

skierpeter

New member
<I>(Note from the Administrator: This message was originally posted on 12/30/99. Due to our move to new servers, the date and time attributed to this post is incorrect.)</I> <BR> <BR>It seems at least twice a week now when looking at the "Whats New" section on First Tracks I always read about someone being killed. It seems most of these accidents are caused by the skier hitting a rock or tree or going off piste and being buried in an avalanch. My point is most of these accidents are caused by the skier themselves with a few exceptions. I also have read that Colorado resorts are cutting down on out of control skiers. I can see how these 2 problems go hand in hand, skiers out of control will hit rocks, trees ect. But is the removing of skiers off the slopes a solution that is working to save lives? Is there any evidence? Another topic that interests me is the helmet issue, anyone heard any talk on making it a requirement in years to come and what are your thoughts? <BR>-Peter Dewar, Anderson IN <BR>"Once a Canadian, Always a Canadian!"
 

Chris Smorul

New member
My thoughts on the helmet thing: After going over a hit at Camelback and landing on my headm I heard birds singing for the next couple of days. I now sport a pearl finished Leedom on my dome whenever I hit the slopes
 

Betsy

New member
Same as Chris-about 4-5 years ago I flew off Darling Point on Willoughby at Burke, came out of one ski, fell and hit my head HARD on the hardpacked snow. I too heard birds singing for a few days. Went out and bought my Boeri that afternoon. Shortly thereafter, an aquaintance of mine who happened to be a snowboard instructor at Burke,was boarding between lessons. He caught an edge and hit a tree head-on (no helmet). He was touch and go for a few days, but thankfully, he made it. 4 years later,he's back snowboarding again and is a strong advocate of wearing helmets. I certainly encourage they're use, but I don't think helmets should be mandatory--It should be up to the individual.
 

csb

New member
I certainly don't think it would benefit the ski industry to make helmets mandatory. <BR> <BR>Here's an idea... what if ski areas were to start offering discounts on lift tickets for skiers that choose to wear helmets? Inherently, a skier with a helmet is a smaller liability risk, so they should be rewarded in this sense. I think this approach would be very healthy for the ski industry and would encourage skier safety. <BR> <BR>--csb
 

Tyger

New member
It's an old thread, but I want to add something. <BR> <BR>I snowboard in a helmet now. I started doing this last season becasue I was, IMHO, getting old, and I felt my mortality bite me. <BR> <BR>I don't think that helmets should be manditory. My kid can't wear one, they're too small for him. (Big guy, big head, and long hair too). And I figure that people know what safety gear they should need. It's bad enough they make snowboarders use a leash. Yeah, like if the board leaves our feet we won't have bigger problems to deal with. It's a personal choice every skiier / boarder makes. If you don't want to wear it, you shouldn't have to. <BR> <BR>-Tyg
 

Admin

Administrator
Staff member
I surprised myself by starting to use a Boeri last year - a half-price sale at a Bozeman (MT) ski shop convinced me to give it a shot. <BR> <BR>Frankly, I was surprised that it didn't bother me at all. Modern helmets have become quite light, and it was comfortable and cozy. The biggest factor I found trouble overcoming was the muffled sound of my hearing. <BR> <BR>However, IMO it's a small price to pay for an increase in safety, marginal or not. A couple of years ago I had a frighteningly close call with a large oak in the woods at Mach 3 at Jay Peak. Caught a tip on an exposed root while dropping over a catwalk cut, and careened backward head first into the woods on the opposite side of the catwalk. Gained a new religion that day. <BR> <BR>However, it ought to be a matter of personal choice. If you start regulating one aspect of skiing and snowboarding, other aspects are nearly certain to follow. Snowsports are a matter of personal choice and personal responsibility.
 

Tyger

New member
Marc : <BR> <BR>Bingo! <BR> <BR>That and if they make it required that all ski / snowboard users must have a helmet, then resorts would have to stock up on helmets. And they'd be resonsible for cleaning them, disenfecting them (Lice is a MAJOR problem here), and so on. <BR> <BR>People know their level of skill, and can choose everything from gear to runs respectively. There's a level of intelligence we have. <BR> <BR>-Tyg
 

Tony Crocker

Administrator
Staff member
Montana Backcountry Adventures snowcat skiing at Big Sky requires helmets and provides them to all customers. Like Marc, I was pleasantly surprised by the weight and comfort. The biggest drawback for me is heat (personal metabolism plus I live in California), which was not that much of an issue at MBA as we took them off inside the snowcat. But I would not look forward to carrying it in liftlines, and even while skiing the ventilation system would have to be impressive to handle our weather, especially in spring. However, it would be nice to have rentals available in areas with a lot of extreme terrain.
 

Tyger

New member
It'd be nice if they could, actually. I've never found helmets to be too hot. Then again, Wisconsin and Minnesota in January, pile on the warmth! I'd like to go to MBA, actually, to try powder. I'll bring my own helmet too. <IMG SRC="http://www.firsttracksonline.com/discus2/clipart/happy.gif" ALT=":)"> <BR> <BR>-Rob "Tyger" Rubin <BR>(Paintball nickname, don't mind me, I'm more used to it)
 

Admin

Administrator
Staff member
Tony, I won't disagree with your logic, for as I stated above I believe it's a matter of personal choice ... but rentals? Heck, I paid $63 for my Boeri. If it's too warm for comfort, I'll make a personal choice and leave it inside, but I've always got it in my gear bag for times that I desire it. Even at a $5/day rental, I avoid the hassle of filling out paperwork to pick one up, and in 13 days, it's paid for.
 

Chris Smorul

New member
Skiing the hard pack here in PA and Jersey can really put a dent in your skull if you hit it right (or should I say wrong?). As far as heat goes, the hills are just not long enough here to really get any intense body heat going. By the time you warm up, it's time to get back on the lift. <BR>Any additional protection that I can wrap around this old abused body is certainly worth any inconvenience. <BR>HEY CANADA!!!!!!!! SEND US SOME COLD AIR WILL YA????????
 

mike foote

New member
I became a helmet convert last season, and I love it. I was pleasantly surprised that thermal management is actually easier in a helmet. If you put your goggles up on the helmet, they don't fog up the way they do on your forehead with a hat. Pulling off and replacing the helmet with goggles attached (on the lift, during lunch, etc) is actually easier than fumbling with a hat and goggles separately. <BR>I recommend a style where soft flaps but not the shell cover your ears -- much better hearing, and easier to use.
 
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