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Killington police chief asks skiers to follow precautions after 21 backcountry rescues last weekend

A photo of a large group of people carrying skis and snowboards hiking in snowy woods.
Killington Police Department
"Stay on trail, don't ski off trail. Never ski alone, and if something were to happen, make sure you call 911 sooner as opposed to later," says Killington Police Chief Whit Montgomery.

The Killington Police Department and the town's all-volunteer search and rescue team hiked, snowshoed and skinned about five miles in frigid temperatures Saturday to rescue 21 skiers and snowboarders lost in the backcountry.

They also received help from Killington Fire and Rescue, Killington resort ski patrol, Rescue Inc. in Brattleboro and Vermont State Police, according to a Killington police press release.

Killington Police Chief Whit Montgomery says it's unusual to have to rescue that many skiers and boarders in one day. He says just as crews were about to leave the scene, a call came in that two more people needed help, and they were the last ones rescued around 7:30 p.m.

A photo showing people skiing through snowy woods at night, with tall trees illuminated by a bright orange light.
Killington Police Department
A total of 21 people had to be rescued from the backcountry on Saturday.

Montgomery says there are simple precautions folks should take on the mountain to stay safe: "Stay on trail, don't ski off trail. Never ski alone, and if something were to happen, make sure you call 911 sooner as opposed to later, the sooner the phone call is made, the sooner we can get people, you know, organized and deployed where needed."

Montgomery says none of the rescued people were injured. There were six juveniles among the 21 people.

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A graduate of NYU with a Master's Degree in journalism, Mitch has more than 20 years experience in radio news. He got his start as news director at NYU's college station, and moved on to a news director (and part-time DJ position) for commercial radio station WMVY on Martha's Vineyard. But public radio was where Mitch wanted to be and he eventually moved on to Boston where he worked for six years in a number of different capacities at member station a Senior Producer, Editor, and fill-in co-host of the nationally distributed Here and Now. Mitch has been a guest host of the national NPR sports program "Only A Game". He's also worked as an editor and producer for international news coverage with Monitor Radio in Boston.
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