Special Thanks to Park City Ski Patrollers

TownLift reader Rich Ford shared this heartfelt and sincere story about an incident at Park City Mountain last week where ski patrollers came to the rescue.

The TownLift editorial team wanted to share it with the community, and in tandem express our recognition of the patrollers’ hard work each and every day.

Letter To The Editor:

On Friday, March 11th we were skiing and riding with a group of family and friends at Park City on The Canyons side of the mountain.  It was a beautiful sunny day with excellent conditions and even some new snow still to be found from the storm earlier in the week.  Becca from North Carolina was in town visiting my daughter along with other family from Tennessee, California and Oregon.

How quickly a great day can change, when Becca took a nasty fall on her snowboard under the Tombstone Lift and was knocked unconscious.  When I got to her, she was out cold and stayed that way for over 90 seconds.  My nephew, three years out of medical school was with me while we waited for ski patrol to arrive on the scene.  After some serious sternum rubs, Becca regained consciousness but was totally out of it and unable to move her lower body.

By this time, the first ski patroller (Julian, I believe) arrived on the scene and took over care for Becca.  Very quickly, three other patrollers (Evan, Weston and Willie) arrived and we observed them perform numerous evaluations and tests to determine the extent of Becca’s injuries, including potential neck and back issues.  The four of them worked together as a team and followed protocol (according to my nephew) to a “T”.

Within minutes, they were ready to transport Becca via toboggan to an ambulance they had radioed for at the base of the Tombstone lift.  From there, she was placed in the ambulance where she was evaluated by the Park City EMT’s and it was determined that Becca should be transported to the University of Utah Trauma Center for further evaluation.

The decision to go to U of U was the right one, as Becca had two minor brain hemorrhages as a result of her fall.  Thankfully she has been released from the hospital and full recovery is expected.

This is a Huge Shout Out of Thanks and Appreciation to everyone who assisted Becca last Friday and especially to the Ski Patrol at Park City.  Having witnessed first-hand the expertise and level of care these four gentlemen (Julian, Evan, Weston and Willie) provided makes me so thankful for what they do, every day of the ski season and the summer.  Too often, this group of professionals is taken for granted.

They are the first to arrive (sometimes as early as 5:00 am on a good powder day) and the last to leave.  Of the 200+ patrollers who work for Park City Mountain Resort, most of them have significant medical training and work under some of the most adverse conditions imaginable.

For the past couple of years, the Ski Patrol Association was negotiating their “expired” contract with the ownership of Park City Mountain and thankfully they reached an agreement without a work stoppage.  Had it gotten to that level, the ski resort would have shut down with hundreds and possibly thousands of people being without work.

That being said, this group of very specialized professionals are mostly “locals” who put it on the line every day they show up to work.  With the recent announcement that all Vail Resorts will be raising the starting wage for the 2022/23 season to $20 per hour, I sincerely hope that management will do what is right and take care of these professionals, who take care of us and make skiing and riding possible on a daily basis.  Please don’t wait for the contract to expire to do what is right.

To Julian, Evan, Weston and Willie and all the Ski Patrol team – THANK YOU!!!

I hope to have the pleasure of seeing you at one of our local establishments (I am known to be at The Spur Bar and Grill on occasion) and your tab is on me.

Rich Ford

Park City Rental Properties

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