This winter I had the opportunity to do something I’ve wanted to do for a couple years now, become a member of the Canadian Ski Patrol.
Alpine skiing and snowboarding is a winter past time enjoyed by millions of people in Canada alone. It is a great way to stay active over the winter months and view the beauty that the Canadian landscape has to offer. But what happens when, all doesn’t go as planned and you end up injured half way down the hill? Thats what the members of the Canadian Ski Patrol train for.
The Canadian Ski Patrol has been helping provide first aid and rescue services since 1941. They are a non profit organization of over 5000 volunteers from close to 230 ski areas who provide 260 000 hours of service. For more information click here.
To become a member I had to do the following:
1.The first step in becoming a member of the Canadian Ski Patrol is to get in contact with your zone, (Algonquin Zone if in the North Bay area) or contact the hill you wish to patrol at.
2. After signing up you I started my training in early September and get started on the 60 hour minimum, advanced first aid course. During this training I received health care provider level CPR, oxygen administration/artificial respiration, slings and bandaging, spinal injury evacuation techniques and much more.
3. After finishing the training you must pass a 100 question, written exam with a mark of 75% or higher.
4.Pass a comprehensive practical test including multiple scenarios up to current standards.
Thats the end of dry land training, to finish my training, and become a fully certified patrol you must pass on hill training, which includes a few more steps.
5. Pass a ski/snowboard ability test, which include varied techniques on all available routes.
6.Last but not least, toboggan training. I had to learn how to evacuate an injured customer who is unable to get themselves down the hill. This includes an additional 6-8 hours of on hill practice until the instructor is satisfied in your skills.