Together safely through the winter
Now we officially know: On 24 December 2020 we can start the ski season in the Skicircus Saalbach Hinterglemm Leogang Fieberbrunn. We spoke to Kornel Grundner, managing director of Leoganger Bergbahnen, about the safety measures that will make this winter a safe one!
Hello Kornel! Thanks a lot for talking to us today. Let’s start with the first question: How is a ski season feasible this year?
The cable car companies in the ALPIN CARD group developed a strict concept of security measures together. It is based on our experiences from summer and the guidelines of the association of the cable cars in Austria.
Which specific measures are part of the concept?
The main measures are keeping distance, wearing a face mask and regular disinfection. In detail this means, that everywhere, where people come close to each other, there is the obligation to wear a face mask and to keep distance – also outdoors and during the ride with the gondola or chairlift. IMPORTANT: During the lockdown in Austria, masks must be at least FFP2.
Many people usually gather at the cash desks or at the access-points of the gondolas. How will you regulate this?
We were able to collect a lot of experiences in summer regarding places where many people gather at once. We have created a guidance system for these points, which helps to keep distance. Additionally, our staff will control the adherence of the measures as well.
Ski busses are usually a great offer for the transfer of people in the skiing area. However, they are of course also a place where different people get together with limited space. Are there any measures taken?
Yes, there will be an additional bus and more rides than before to decrease the number of passengers per bus. Furthermore, the busses will be disinfected regularly and of course passengers must wear a face mask.
And how does it work inside the cable cars?
The cable cars have a good air circulation and exchange, as they have windows which will be opened all the time and when the gondolas are driving through the stations, the doors are opened completely. Furthermore, the cable cars will be disinfected regularly. And as already said, the face mask is obligatory.
So, the face mask is always obligatory when people are coming close to each other.
The situation is unfamiliar, but the whole pandemic is new to us. But we learned from summer that people wear the face mask willingly as it is a little price to pay in order to being able to enjoy the sport they love and nature this winter.
Will there be additional limitations on how many people can ride per gondola or chair lift?
Partly, partly. According to the regulation of the Federal Government, only half of the seats in the gondolas may be occupied. This regulation does not apply to the chair lifts. In principle, it is up to the guests to decide whether or not they wish to travel with others in a gondola or chairlift. We will not force them to board gondolas or chairlifts that are already occupied.
The huts may only open from 7 January 2021. Where can you go to the toilet then?
There are enough toilet facilities throughout the ski area. These are located at the lift stations. At the Asitz alone, there are a total of 8 larger public WC facilities for men and women at the lift stations. They will be cleaned and disinfected several times a day.
What can we do as guests apart from using common sense?
The most important is to enjoy the sport and the nature. The pandemic is challenging all of us, but we have taken our actions and all companies involved in winter holidays – from the cable car companies to the skiing schools, ski rental, ski huts and hotels – all of them are doing their best to make this winter safe for all of us. Let’s get through this winter safely together!