BASIC PATROLLER TRAINING PROGRAM
To become a basic patroller, you will first need to apply to be in the Program and once accepted, train as a "Patrol Trainee". Review the following FAQ's and fill out the Interest Form (see tab). Upon receipt of the Interest Form, our Training Supervisor will review your form and contact you. Based upon your qualifications and experience, you will be advised of training information and/or suggestions on how to proceed.
The Mt. Shasta Ski Patrol is made up of both paid and volunteer patrollers. The Paid Patrol is the paid division of the Mt. Shasta Ski Patrol for the Mt. Shasta Ski Park. Members of the Paid Patrol are employees of the Ski Park and have scheduled patrol days. The Volunteer Patrol is the volunteer division of the Mt. Shasta Ski Patrol for the Mt. Shasta Ski Park. Volunteer patrollers are not scheduled and may patrol on any day. Volunteer patrollers typically have full time jobs and obligations and patrol on their days off. Regardless of whether a patroller is a volunteer or paid employee, each will receive the same training and each will perform basically the same duties while on patrol.
How do I know if I should be a Paid or Volunteer patroller?
If you are looking for a part time or full time job, the Paid patrol may be your best option. You will be required to patrol at least 3 days a week.
If you currently have a job, or other obligations that require a lot of your time and you just want to patrol on your days off or when you have time, the Volunteer patrol will be your best option. Minimum requirement is 10 days a season.
What are the requirements for acceptance into the Basic Patroller Program?
There are five basic requirements:
(1) Successfully complete an interview process.
(2) Successfully pass a skiing or boarding assessment.
(3) Possess a current CPR certification.
(4) Possess a current OEC (Outdoor Emergency Care), EMT, Wilderness First Responder or higher certification.
(you may begin training if you are currently enrolled in an approved medical course)
(5) Register with the National Ski Patrol.
Note: Registration with NSP is optional for Paid Trainees and required for Volunteer Trainees.
How good of a skier or snowboarder do I have to be?
We are looking for skiers & snowboarders who are stable and confident anywhere on our mountain. We have a wide variety of terrain and features, and our conditions may change dramatically throughout any given day. We don't expect pretty, but we do expect competent.
How do I get the medical training? (if you already have medical training, see OEC Challenge below)
The National Ski Patrol has developed a course referred to as "Outdoor Emergency Care" (OEC) and certification in OEC is required of all patrollers. This is an ~80 hr course which is given in the summer or fall and is offered through the National Ski Patrol's local patrols throughout the nation. This nationally recognized program is designed to help you manage the toughest emergencies, in all seasons. The course is comparable in scope to a basic EMT course, but with more emphasis on outdoor trauma and medical emergencies. For current courses offered, you may go on-line to www.farwest.org and check under Calendars and Far West Courses.
Alternative options to taking an OEC course include:
Enroll in a EMT course through one of your local colleges or EMS organizations;
Enroll in a Wilderness First Responder (WFR) course through one of the following providers:
Wilderness Medicine Institute (WMI);
Stonehearth Open Learning Opportunities (SOLO);
Wilderness Medical Associates (WMA);
**Any WFR course must be a minimum of 72 hours to qualify to challenge the OEC** (see below)
Upon receiving an EMT or WFR certification, you will be required to certify in OEC to be a Basic Patroller. This certification can be acquired by "challenging" the OEC course. (see below)
I am already an WFR, EMT or higher. Do I need to take an OEC course?
No. If you are currently certified/licensed as a WFR, EMT or higher, you can do an OEC Challenge Course. This involves successfully passing a written exam, practical skills test and a $60 fee.
Exception: If you are a current EMT, advanced EMT, or paramedic you may receive an OEC technician card by successfully completing the OEC Modified Challenge course. This course is a skills only test and costs $60.
Challenge applicants must meet one or more of the following:
> Emergency trained and currently certified as: EMT, MD/DO, PA/NP, RN, or LPN .
> Previous OEC certification provided the expired OEC certification date has not exceeded three years.
> Certain wilderness first responders whose courses have a minimum of 72 hours of course work (currently approved are WMI, WMA, and SOLO).
> Other certifications may be approved by the national education director after consultation with the national OEC Program director. This is based upon the submission and review of appropriate curriculum materials.
> Challenge time requirements (total hours) will vary with background, specialty, and experience.
> Challenge applicants must practice skills with an OEC instructor prior to the challenge testing.
> If the OEC challenge applicant fails any portion of the challenge examination, there is no retest opportunity and the applicant must then participate in a full OEC course.
During your basic patroller training, we will offer periodic OEC Challenge testing.
My OEC Certification has expired. What are my options?
If your OEC certification date has not exceeded three years, you may "challenge" the OEC Course. If it has been over three years, you will need to take and OEC or other approved course.
What is involved in the Basic Patroller Training Program?
Upon acceptance into our Program, there are a series of disciplines that you will be trained and evaluated in to become a Basic Patroller
(1) Skiing/Boarding Proficiency
(2) Toboggan-Handling Proficiency
(3) Incident Site Management
(4) Hill Safety
(5) Medical & Rescue Skills
(6) OEC Certification
(7) Basic Patrol Test
Upon successful completion of the Program you will qualify as a Basic Patroller.
What days and times is Candidate Training offered?
Trainees will be notified in advance of weekly training sessions. Each Trainee progresses at their own rate. This is a big-time commitment, so be prepared. When you do attend training, you are required to put in a full day. Report times are 0730 hrs at the Patrol Room….booted up and ready to ski. Training generally ends after the day shift sweep….approximately 1630 hrs. There may be times when you may be asked to stay longer. These include special training events, or search and rescues, such as when there may be lost or unaccounted Park guests. Off season training begins in the early Fall of each year. In addition, trainees are required to attend our annual 2-day patrol refresher, normally held in November or December.
Paid Trainees - All training days and times will be scheduled, and Paid Trainees will be required to attend training on their scheduled times and days.
Volunteer Trainees - We realize many of you have full-time jobs, families, and other commitments, and that it would be difficult to maintain a strict training schedule. During basic patroller training, you are not scheduled, and you may attend training days when you are able. If you do plan on attending a training session, notify the Training Supervisor at least a day in advance.
How much time is required in the Basic Patroller Training Program?
There are no time requirements to complete the Basic Patroller Program. Each Trainee completes the Program when they have successfully been trained and evaluated in all the required disciplines. Generally, the program can be completed in as little as a few days (such as for transferring patrollers and those with previous experience) or a few months. It all depends on your abilities, prior experience and how often you can attend training. Attendance is the key!! The average training period for a training is approximately 2 months.
As a Volunteer Trainee, you need to realize the training will be a BIG time commitment! Anyone that is interested, should give it serious consideration, before jumping in. Basic Patroller training is significant.....for both yourself and your family. It is important that this is understood. Volunteer Trainees will be expected to attend most of the training sessions. Again, attendance is the key! Your training time will depend on your commitment, skills and experience. It is a big commitment, but the job of being a Ski Patroller is a big responsibility......as ultimately you will likely be in a position to save someone's life.
Ski Patrol can be a very rewarding and exciting experience. Through this training you will gain self confidence, knowledge, and important skills that will help you on and off the hill. Responding to emergency situations isn't something most people do or plan on doing, but responding and managing emergency situations is part of what we do.....and with the training we provide.....you will be ready to handle them with confidence.
There is no better feeling in the world to know that you were the one that made a positive difference someone's life.
As a Patroller, how often must I patrol?
Paid Patrol - A minimum of 3 days a week.
Volunteer Patrol - To maintain an "active" status, you must patrol a minimum of ten days per season, attend our annual 2-day Patrol Refreshers in November or December; and maintain OEC and CPR proficiency.
Do Patrollers receive any benefits?
Yes. Paid and Volunteer Trainees and Patrollers receive certain benefits that may include discounted prices at the Park, daily comp passes, meal tickets, employee and family season passes.
Are there any costs involved in the Basic Patroller Training Program?
Paid Patrol Trainees - You will be responsible for providing your own ski helmet and ski / board equipment.
Volunteer Trainees - Cost of your training will be covered through your NSP dues. During your training days, you will be issued a complimentary lift ticket. Meals, travel, ski equipment, helmets*, clothing and other items will be at your own expense. There are initial costs prior to training.....those involved in acquiring your medical certifications, CPR card and your annual National Ski Patrol dues.
* During training, trainees are required to wear a helmet..
Our annual NSP dues are $100 and all volunteer patrollers are required to pay them. Usually these dues are paid at our annual refresher in November or December. Trainees are required to pay these dues prior to any training. These dues are non-refundable.
An OEC Challenge is $60. If you need to challenge the OEC, this fee is paid prior to the challenge test......given periodically throughout the ski season.
CPR training fees can vary from $15 to $50. If you do not have a current CPR card, CPR training and cards can be acquired at our annual refreshers in November/December. Otherwise, CPR training can be acquired through various private and EMS organizations in your local community.
Upon becoming a basic patroller, you will be required to purchase the appropriate uniform:
Jackets: $200 - $350 - Red with black trim
Vests: $90 - $120 - Red with black trim (Long solid black sleeves must be worn under the vest).
Helmets: $40 - $120. Patrollers are required to wear a ski helmet (solid black in color). It can generally be any make and model approved ski helmet.
Black ski pants. Pants must be solid black and can be of any make and model.
***All costs are approximate***