Safety on the slopes - WKOW 27: Madison, WI Breaking News, Weather and Sports

Safety on the slopes

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Cascade Mountain in Columbia County on Saturday Cascade Mountain in Columbia County on Saturday

PORTAGE (WKOW) -- Crew members at Cascade Mountain are constantly on the look out for fallen skiers.

"Most of the injuries are from people falling down," said spokesperson Randy Axelson. "The more serious injuries are from people colliding into objects, which is usually the trees."

Snowboarders face unique injuries too, like falling face forward onto the frozen hill.

"Catch that front side edge, put all that weight and momentum onto the wrists, that's a bad scene," said Michael White, assistant crew chief.

Part of the problem, experts say -- everybody gets rusty in between seasons. If you don't know the rules, it could end your skiing for the day, if not for the winter.

"Ski under control at all times," said Axelson. "Be able to stop and avoid everything downhill from you."

"You need to be cognizant of who's behind you and can they see you, and are they going to be able to stop," White said.

The right safety equipment and wardrobe can help, too.

"We advise if you're skiing or snowboarding that you were a helmet. Just like the bicycle industry, we're seeing more and more helmets on people when they're skiing," said Axelson.

"Cotton is bad," according to White. "Don't wear a lot of cotton close to your body. It's going to get wet. You're going to sweat in it. And it's going to turn badly cold."

And when it comes to warming-up, don't be embarrassed to try the bunny hill. It's a safe way to explore your personal boundaries.

Said White, "If you have any misconceptions about your ability, or what your limits are, you should be taking a lesson."

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