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Alpine Meadows Installs Magnetized Chairlifts

Alpine Meadows Installs Magnetized Chairlifts

[ Thu, 2010-11-04 19:23 ]
The newest move in ski lift safety? Giant magnets.

 Nervous about your kid falling off the chairlift? Do their short legs make them ride precariously close to the edge? Good news. Now, you can magnetically stick them to the back of the chair.

French company Magnestick has been installing magnetized chairs in Europe for the past three years, and this winter they’re coming to the U.S.

Alpine Meadows is the first resort in the states to implement Magnestick.  They installed it in two of their beginner chairs: Meadow and Subway.

We’ve had a lot of questions,” says Rachel Woods, the resort’s Public Relation Manager.

Woods says they wanted to add an additional safety element to their ski school program, and give nervous parents peace of mine.

Six coaster-sized magnets were installed in back of each of the double chairs. Then, kiddos are given vests with magnetized backs. As the chair goes through the upper terminal, a non-magnetic brass brush interrupts the current, demagnetizing the chairs, and releasing the kids. All Kids Camp(3-6 year old) ski schoolers will be issued a vest, and cautious parents can also rent them for what Woods says will be a nominal fee.

According to Wired magazine, which reviewed the system in it's Gadget Lab, “Magnestick will stop your child from slipping out of ski chairlifts and hurtling down the mountainside to certain rocky doom. It will do this even if the lazy lift attendant forgets to lower the safety bar because he’s goofing off and chatting up girls instead of doing his damn job.” Sounds promising to us.