MILAN, 2nd January 2017 – The idea is simple: because Ski mountaineering activity implies ascent and descent, athletes need double protection. ISMF decided to put a further focus on safety on slopes and races. And head comes always first: for 2016 – 2017 season, the Federation requires helmets complying with two different standards, the mountaineering one and the alpine skiing and snowboarding ones. From this season on, the double certification helmets will be compulsory at ISMF World Cup and ISMF World Championships. «We decided to adopt this important up grade – says Roberto Cavallo, ISMF general secretary and commercial responsible for the manufacturers pool – in order to fulfil the highest standard of safety».
The research and development of new helmets has been going on for three years thanks to the shared commitment of the Manufactures’ pool managed by Denis Pivot, Alex Pellicier, former ISMF technical director, and the technical commission of ISMF leaded by Gil Orriols, current ISMF technical director.
Going into details, the traditional helmet for mountaineering is, on the one hand, classified as EN 12492 and is designed to protect against the fall of objects like ice, stones and even against ski impacts, thus working as a protecting “shield” for the third superior of the head. On the other hand, the so classified EN 1077 class B standards is the typical helmet for alpine ski and snowboard. Its function is focused on the two third inferior of the head. It works against shock and penetration.
«Ski mountaineering is a complete sport: it puts together a mix of climbing and hiking skills on great terrain and speed on slopes and unmarked path – adds Lluis Lopez, ISMF vice president Sport & Events – : that is why we need the most complete equipment and the best outfit»
New helmets regulations match with the other important upgrade of the season: the mandatory introduction of an innovative transceiver that athletes must keep in a zipped closed pocket in the racing suit, at the belly level, during the competitions. The new Dva (avalanche victim searching device) is a three antennas based tracking system, which allows more precise and effective results in case of avalanches. Manufacturers are producing the new three antennas Dva reducing the size and weight to adapt into the racing demands. The procedure agreed between manufacturers and ISMF was approved during the plenary Assembly.
In both devices adoption, the reaction of brands, suppliers and manufacturing companies have been positive and cooperating as usual, keeping both weight and price as low as possible: they soon adapted their productions to the new standard required, in order to be ready from the first races of the season. Waiting for the kick off of the World Cup season in three weeks’ time in Andorra, how to know if a helmet is complying with 2016-2017 ISMF Sporting and Ranking Rules? The answer is easy: the two numbers of the standards must be both marked – EN 12492 and EN1077 class B standards – on the helmet, generally inside the shell. A designation “Helmet for mountaineers and helmets for alpine ski & snowboard” is also needed and it is typically marked on the label.
ISMF press office