NSW Police launch Operation Snow Safe for 2020 ski season

NSW Police are urging the community to have a plan and stay ‘Snow Safe’ as the 2020 ski season commences next week.

The official NSW snow season begins next Monday (22 June 2020), with ski resorts opening throughout the week and enacting their ‘COVIDsafe’ plans.

Additional police will be deployed to the Snowy Mountains region from across the state as part of the high-visibility police operation. Visitors can expect to see officers from General Duties, Traffic and Highway Patrol Command, Southern Region Enforcement Squad, licensing police and other specialist officers – including trained Alpine Operators – throughout the season.

Regional NSW Field Operations, Deputy Commissioner Gary Worboys APM, said visitors to the area can expect to see a different kind of snow season in 2020.

“The population of our snowfields and surrounding towns increases exponentially during winter, and for local police, community safety is always the number one priority,” Deputy Commissioner Worboys said.

“This year we have the added complexities of COVID-19, and we are working closely with the ski resorts and our partner agencies to ensure the safety of the community.

“Police will continue to patrol these areas to ensure compliance and we ask the public to continue to adhere to restrictions and ensure they observe physical distancing guidelines.”

Southern Region Commander, Acting Assistant Commissioner Greg Moore APM, said police will be out in force to ensure the safety of the community.

“People can expect to see police out and about throughout the season targeting road safety, alcohol-related crime, anti-social behaviour and personal safety,” Acting Assistant Commissioner Moore said.

“We will have additional staff seconded to Jindabyne from other police districts who will support the work of our local police, and other units such as Highway Patrol, the Dog Squad and the Region Enforcement Squad.

“Our priority is to keep people safe – on the slopes, roads, licensed venues and out and about in the alpine region.

“Snowfield conditions can be difficult to navigate so we’d like to remind everyone to prioritise safety on your journey – pay close attention to the roads, don’t get distracted and slow down.”

NSW Police are also urging hikers visiting the region to ensure their personal safety by submitting a Trip Intention Form and hiring a Personal Locator Beacon (PLB) before heading out into the national park.

Further information on driving in snowfield conditions can be found by visiting the Centre for Road Safety website: https://roadsafety.transport.nsw.gov.au/index.html

Hikers can contact the Snowy Region Visitor Centre for more information or visit: https://www.nationalparks.nsw.gov.au or www.environment.nsw.gov.au.

For general snow safety tips when visiting alpine regions, as well as useful links you can access: https://snowsafe.org.au/

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