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Austrian Ski Area Seeks Exemption From Opening this Winter

The operators of an Austrian ski centre are reported to have asked local authorities for permission not to operate this winter due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Axamer Lizum is one of the ski areas close to Innsbruck, it was a venue for downhill racing at successive Innsbruck Winter Olympic Games and is included on the Innsbruck regional ski pass.

Reports in The Tyrolean newspaper say that the centre’s operators have submitted an application to the Tyrolean state government for exemption from operating this winter, which it is otherwise legally required to do.

Axamer Lizum Kalkkögel ©Tirol Werbung Mallaun Josef

The reasons for the request are reported to include travel bans or restrictions coming in to force from countries from which skiers usually arrive, compensation claims from the epidemic law, and other virus-related factors which the operators believe make a greater financial loss from operating this winter inevitable.

The move has not gone down well with locals, who argue that most of the centre’s business is in fact from local people anyway and that many businesses in resort would be severely damaged if the centre did not open.

 Local skiers are also unhappy that the centre has not mentioned any intention not to open and is selling advanced 20-21 season lift passes.

Worries have also been expressed that if permitted more centres might follow Axamer Lizum’s lead.

Crisis meetings are taking place over the next few days with the aim of keeping the centre operating this winter.

Generally most large to medium ski areas worldwide do appear to be intending to open for the season, and more than a dozen already have…

Only a few centres are known to be skipping their 20-21 seasons including a small US centre where the centre’s owners already had major financial issues that have been exacerbated by the virus pandemic, and a small Swiss centre which normally focussed on group bookings from race teams and youth groups.

5 Comments
  1. Robin Falkingham

    5th October 2020 4:23 pm

    Where is Sigi Haberzettl when you need him…………..

  2. Baz

    6th October 2020 6:36 pm

    Yet more madness in the post covid era. People really don’t wan to have a life these days. Lets all get a giant bag of cotton wool and wrap ourselves up in it in case we come to any harm. Better yet, lets give up our driving licences and stop drinking or having sex as there’s plenty of risks associated with those activities. Any takers? Thought not. Think about that next time you sing the praises of the covid panic strategy globally. Will these freedoms be the next ones to go???

  3. Baz

    6th October 2020 6:51 pm

    And the covid related madness continues. Just out of curiosity does anyone think that they still want one of them life things? With the associated risk things? Maybe we should all hand over our diving licences and while we’re at it give up drinking, skiing, and having sex – there are plenty of health consequences associated with all of these. Any takers on the next set of freedoms to go in the bin? Maybe not eh, kind of amazing the wild panic over-reaction with covid. But that’s what happens when you only hear one side of the story for months on end being reported by the world’s media outlets. Literally no balance whatsoever, all “we’re going to die message” nothing from leading academics that if you dug hard enough you could find right from the start saying lockdown would cause way more problems for the health of the global population than covid would ever pose…. you’re starting to find these people making it through the noise now, but its too little too late. I mean seriously who ignores Professors of Epidemiology from Oxford Uni when making a decision like lockdown based on Epidemiological info? Who disregards Nobel Prize winning scientists that oppose the idea of lockdown based on data? Anyway. Base on the facts that only 39 people under 40 years old who didn’t have serious health problem have died with covid (not necessarily because of it) in the uk since the start of this “pandemic”, and 1400 people of all ages – you’d have to say this is a total disgrace. I wrote something about this in March at the early end of last season, as I’m passionate about my sport and feel like it is currently under significant threat. This is just another step towards that, if we keep going there will be no ski industry left, it was already suffering through climate change and global ecconomics…. careful what you wish for when you sing the praises of the lockdown and so on. And just to be clear, I’m not saying don’t follow advice. But washing your hands and maybe mask wearing in close spaces only, and being very careful round old relatives with health concerns etc would’ve been enough…. seemed to work fine in Japan.

  4. Butterworth

    7th October 2020 3:55 am

    if the resort depends on gondolas or trains not lifts its a problem. If they need people in hotels to justify opening thats a problem.employee housing is a problem and here in the states many are resort workers are foreigners so the visa/travel might be a problem.

    • Baz

      8th October 2020 2:50 pm

      It really shouldn’t be. There is no need for masks or social distancing any more. Unless you are a pensioner and suffering with other co-morbidity you chances of dying with covid are extremely low. It is no worse than seasonal Flu, as I said on a post on snow forecast back in March. And low and behold, its exactly that now. There are many lockdown dissenting scientists starting to gain traction at last the likes of Professor Sunetra Gupta from Oxford and Professor Bhattacharya from Stanford give excellent overview of why we don’t need these measures. This video explains the situation using data beautifully: https://youtu.be/8UvFhIFzaac

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