Taking safety to the slopes

    TORONTO, March 8 /CNW/ - Pumped about hitting the slopes this March
Break? Skiing and snowboarding are invigorating, exciting and fun but like
many other activities there are risks involved. The Technical Standards and
Safety Authority (TSSA) has a number of safety tips that will assist skiers
and snowboarders in enjoying their experience at one of Ontario's snow
    Even before you set foot on the snow, it's important to wear appropriate
safety equipment. Wearing a ski helmet and goggles is highly recommended and
will greatly add to your protection.
    The anticipation of racing down the hill can sometimes overshadow the
importance of getting up the hill safely. Unsafe behaviour continues to
account for a vast majority of ski lift incidents. Listen to the ski lift
attendants and follow their helpful instructions. For parents, take an active
role in making sure that your child is aware of and understands the importance
of proper safety behaviour for all chair lifts, bar lifts and rope tows. For
small children who can easily slip out of a chair lift, have an adult ride the
lift with them.

    Here are a number of other safety tips to follow:

    When getting on the lift, remember to LOOK, LOAD and LOWER:

    - Look out for small children. Have at least one adult ride with them.
    - Look for instructional signs before you prepare to load.
    - Look and wait for your time to load.
    - Look over your shoulder for the approaching chair.
    - Secure loose hair and clothes, and remove backpacks and headsets.

    - Bend your knees and prepare for the chair.
    - If riding alone, sit in the middle of the chair.
    - Hold poles in one hand and remove safety straps.
    - Ask for help from the lift attendant if unsure.

    - Lower the safety bar as soon as your skis or snowboard leave the snow.
    - Watch for the sign to raise the safety bar.
    - Keep a close eye on small children who can easily slip out of the lift.
    - Raise the safety bar only when preparing to unload.
    - Remain seated. Do not bounce or swing the chair.
    - Single riders sit in the middle of the chair.

    When getting off the lift, remember to LIFT, STAND and LEAVE:

    - Watch for the sign to raise the safety bar.
    - Raise the tips on skis and snowboards when entering stations.

    - Raise the safety bar only when preparing to unload.
    - Listen to and obey the operator's instructions at all times.

    - Unload at designated areas only.
    - Clear the unloading area immediately.
    - Ask the lift operator for help with dropped articles.

    So what's the last thing to remember? Zooming on your snowboard or
zigzagging on your skis takes a lot of physical work, and can be tiring,
especially towards the end of the day. That's the time when concentration
starts to slip and incidents can occur. If you or your child tires, it's safer
to pack it in. Hit the chalet, grab some cocoa and take the mogul dare another
day. The hill will still be there.
    Show your friends and family how cool and safe this season can be. Take
safety with you.
    For more information on these and other safety topics, please visit
TSSA's safety website, www.safetyinfo.ca. Remember, safety is up to you.

    About TSSA

    TSSA is an innovative, self-funded non-government company focused on
delivering public safety services. It provides not-for-profit regulatory
safety services in industry sectors such as ski lifts, amusement devices,
boilers and pressure vessels, elevating devices, natural gas, petroleum,
propane fuels and equipment, operating engineers, and upholstered and stuffed
articles. The company's vision is to be the world leader in public safety

For further information:

For further information: Dave Lisle, Director, Public Relations and
Communications, TSSA, Telephone: 1-877-682-8772, Email: media@tssa.org For
more information on the Technical Standards and Safety Authority, please visit
our website at www.tssa.org

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