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Safety At Hogadon

Hogadon ski lift, City of Casper

Safety changes at Hogadon are underway. Casper City Council heard from Leisure Services this week about safety recommendations coming out of public meetings held after the fatal accident in late December.

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Casper City Council got a look at new signage for Hogadon that directs skiers and snowboarders to slow down in some areas, prohibits smoking and foul language on the lifts and reminds folks to “know the code”; that’s the skiers responsibility code.

Leisure services director, Doug Follick, says enforcement is the next issue.

Hogadon has one professional ski patroller and relies heavily on volunteer patrols.

Hogadon Manager, Gary Vantrease, says volunteer patrol recruitment has been a challenge. He sites the financial and time commitments.

“The training, they have to do a training every season, and all of these things add up to a very significant committment of time by ski patrol”

Follick also points out that volunteer patrollers have never been asked to administer discipline; this is left for the Pro patrol and Area Management. Volunteers do have the authority, he says, and are encouraged, to detain anyone violating area policies, but an insurance advisor to Hogadon has told the ski area to maintain its current approach.

Vantrease explains that volunteer are asked to work 8 days in the season.
For their service they get season passes plus eight day-passes to use as they please. Cost of travel and supplies are covered. Increasing incentives to join the patrol, he says is under consideration.

Right now Vantrease says he has about 40 patrollers and would like at least 20 more.

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