Piste rules for Skiers and snowboarders
Rule 1 - Respect for others
A skier must behave in such a way that he does not endanger or prejudice others. Skiers are responsible not only for their own behaviour but also for their defective equipment. This also applies to those using newly developed equipment.
A skier must ski in control. He must adapt his speed and manner of skiing to his personal ability and to the prevailing conditions of terrain, snow and weather as well as to the density of traffic. Collisions usually happen because skiers are travelling too fast, out of control or have failed to see others. A skier must be able to stop, turn and move within his own vision. In crowded areas or in places where visibility is reduced, skiers must ski slowly especially at the edge of a steep slope, at the bottom of a piste and within areas surrounding ski lifts.
A skier coming from behind must choose his route in such a way that he does not endanger skiers ahead. Skiing is a free activity sport where everyone may ski where and as they please, provided that they abide by these rules and adapt their skiing to their own personal ability and to the prevailing conditions on the mountain. The skier in front has priority. The skier skiing behind another in the same direction must keep sufficient distance between himself and the other skier so as to leave the preceding skier enough space to make all his movements freely.
A skier may overtake another skier above or below and to the right or to the left provided that he leaves enough space for the overtaken skier to make any voluntary or involuntary movement. A skier who overtakes another is wholly responsible for completing that manoeuvre in such a way as to cause no difficulty to the skier being overtaken. This responsibility rests with him until the overtaking manoeuvre has been completed. This rule applies even when overtaking a stationary skier.
A skier entering a marked run or starting again after stopping must look up and down the run to make sure that he can do so without endangering himself or others. It is absolutely essential that a skier finding himself in this situation enters the piste safely and without causing an obstruction or danger to himself or others. When he has started skiing properly again - even slowly - he has the benefit of rule 3 as against faster skiers coming from above or behind.
Unless absolutely necessary, a skier must avoid stopping on the piste in narrow places or where visibility is restricted. After a fall in such a place, a skier must move clear of the piste as soon as possible. Except on wide pistes stops must be made at the side of the piste. One must not stop in narrow places or where it is difficult to be seen from above.
Both a skier climbing or descending on foot must keep to the side of the piste. Moving against the general direction poses unexpected obstacles for the skiers. Footprints damage the piste and can cause danger to skiers.
A skier must respect the signals and markings. The degree of difficulty of a piste is indicated in black, red or blue. A skier is free to choose whichever piste he wants. The pistes are also marked with other signs showing direction or giving warnings of danger or closure. A sign closing a piste, like one denoting danger, must be strictly observed. Skiers should be aware that warning signs on pistes are in their own interests.
Every skier is duty bound to assist. It is a cardinal principle for all sportsmen that they should render assistance following an accident independent of any legal obligation to do so. Immediate First Aid should be given, the appropriate authorities alerted and the place of the accident marked to warn other skiers. FIS hopes that a hit and run offence in skiing will incur a criminal conviction similar to a hit and run offence on the road and that equivalent penalties will be imposed by all countries where such legislation is not already in force.
Every skier and witness, whether responsible party or not, must exchange names and addresses following an accident. Witnesses are of great importance in establishing a full and proper report of an accident and therefore everybody must consider that it is his duty as a responsible person to provide information as a witness. Reports of the rescue service and of the police as well as photographs are of considerable assistance in determining civil and criminal liability.