Colorado is widely known for its world-class skiing and snowboarding destinations, attracting millions of visitors each year. However, with the thrill of these winter sports comes a level of risk. Every year, hundreds of skiers and snowboarders suffer injuries, with some even losing their lives. Understanding ski and snowboard accident statistics in Colorado is crucial for anyone who plans on hitting the slopes.
According to Colorado Ski Country USA, during the 2020-2021 ski season, there were a total of 187 accidents reported in their member resorts. Of these accidents, 151 were skier-related, and 36 were snowboarder-related. The most common injuries reported were broken bones, with 33% of all injuries being fractures. Head injuries were also prevalent, accounting for 18% of all injuries.
The National Ski Areas Association (NSAA) also reports accident statistics for Colorado ski resorts. In the 2019-2020 ski season, there were 199 reported accidents, with 79 of them resulting in serious injuries, including skull fractures, brain trauma, and spinal cord injuries. Unfortunately, six people lost their lives due to skiing or snowboarding accidents in Colorado that season.
The NSAA also provides data on the causes of skiing and snowboarding accidents. The most common cause of accidents is loss of control by the skier or snowboarder, accounting for 35% of all accidents. Collisions with other skiers or snowboarders accounted for 22% of accidents, while collisions with fixed objects, such as trees or lift towers, made up 17% of accidents.
It is also worth noting that the majority of skiing and snowboarding accidents occur on intermediate slopes, followed by beginner slopes, and then advanced slopes. Beginners are particularly susceptible to accidents, as they are more likely to lose control or collide with other skiers or snowboarders.
While skiing and snowboarding accidents can happen to anyone, certain groups are more at risk than others. Male skiers and snowboarders are more likely to be involved in accidents than females, and younger skiers and snowboarders (under the age of 25) are more likely to be involved in accidents than older adults.
So what can skiers and snowboarders do to reduce their risk of accidents? It is essential to follow the ski resort's rules and regulations. This includes obeying signs and markings, skiing or snowboarding under control, and giving the right of way to other skiers or snowboarders. Wearing a helmet is also highly recommended, as it can protect against head injuries.
Skiing and snowboarding accidents can be devastating, but understanding statistics and taking appropriate safety precautions can reduce the risk. Keep yourself in control, wear a helmet, and follow the resort's rules and regulations. With these precautions in mind, you can enjoy the slopes of Colorado safely.