Mt. Hood Ski Patrol readies for ski season

Posted By: The Ski Channel on October 6, 2009 6:29 pm

Every year the ski patrol officers at Mt. Hood get together to practice a rescuing patrons from a stalled ski lift.  This team of volunteers are not required to know how to ski, but do have to take several safety courses in “outdoor emergency care, pre-hospital care, CPR, transporting patients and drills such as ski lift evacuation and avalanche response.”

During these drills patrollers play both the part of the rescuer and the rescued.  The procedure for saving a person from a stalled lift involves lowering stranded passengers one at a time from the lift in a small chair attached to a rope.  Brian Barker, a five year patrol veteran told the press, “if you’ve done it you can describe how to maneuver, why they’re going to be okay, and why they’re going to be safe.”

According to the Mt. Hood Ski Patrol, the amount of time it takes to successfully stage a rescue depends on the conditions outside, but average around two hours.