SYMPOSIA PAPER Published: 01 January 1993

Organization of Skiing Safety in a New Alpine Area: Injury Severity Score Used to Compare and Classify the Difficulty of the Slopes


Hafjell Alpine Center is the new Norwegian Winter Olympic Arena for 1994, and also the national alpine project area. The lift capacity is about 8000 transportations per hour. A total of 770,672 lift transportations and 86 injuries were registered between December 15, 1990 and April 15, 1991. The injury rate was 3.77 ∙ 10 -4 injury per 1000 vertical meters skied or 2.2 injuries per 1000 skier days.

Skiing safety has been established in the new area through a ski school, a shop for ski rental and binding testing, a rescue team based on the ski patrol, and a doctor on call in the alpine center during the crowded weekends.

All skiing injuries were recorded on a questionnaire and the abbreviated injury scale (AIS) and the injury severity score (ISS) were calculated. The ISS was marked on a map of the entire area to spot exactly where the accident occurred. The sum of ISS for each slope and for the whole area was also calculated.

This model proved to be an excellent opportunity to make major and minor alterations on the slopes: flattening and widening the trails by taking out rocks and obstructions, correcting defects, and grooming the slopes for the next day.

The total ISS during the recorded period was 318. A corrected ISS of 345 was related to the total lift transportations and to the total skiing length and the vertical drop. This corrected score may possibly be used to compare the results from one year to another and from one center to the other.

Author Information

Bergstrøm, KA
Omm Qasr Hospital, UNIKOM, UN, Lillehammer, Norway
Askild, O
Øyer Health Center, Tretten, Norway
JøDrgensen, NA
Skipatrol Hafjell Alpine Center, Øyer, Norway
Ekeland, A
Ullevaal Hospital, University of Oslo, Oslo, Norway
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Developed by Committee: F27
Pages: 229–235
DOI: 10.1520/STP25573S
ISBN-EB: 978-0-8031-5237-3
ISBN-13: 978-0-8031-1494-4