^Courtesy: Taos Ski Valley
Taos Ski Valley just wrapped up their 2020-2021 winter season on April 4th, and the resort is reporting that none of its employees tested positive for COVID-19 through the entirety of the season.
Ski resorts haven’t been immune to COVID-19 cases, and the fact that Taos finished the season without any positive tests is quite remarkable.
The resort achieved this feat by conducting over 2,000 PCR tests, implementing strict COVID-19 procedures, and educating their staff on the importance of adhering to the guidelines.
You can read the full press release from Taos Ski Valley below.
Taos Ski Valley Wraps-Up 2020-2021 Ski Season That Kept Staff, Guests, and Community Health at the Forefront
Zero cases of COVID among staff demonstrates power of industry-leading operating procedures
TAOS SKI VALLEY, NM – April 9, 2021 – Taos Ski Valley closed on its 2020-2021 ski season on Sunday, marking the end of its highly unusual operating plan that included extensive COVID-Safe Protocols designed to keep guests, staff, and the community’s health and wellbeing top-of-mind. As a result of the aggressive COVID procedures, Taos Ski Valley operated throughout the season without a single case of COVID detected among its staff, a stand-out in the industry.
Avoiding staff and guest spread of COVID was a critical objective for Taos Ski Valley, and so it put in place industry-leading measures including daily screening via an advanced mobile app, and regular surveillance testing of the workforce. The resort conducted more than 2,000 PCR tests since December and had a zero-positivity rate throughout the entirety of its season. It also participated in community testing with the Village of Taos Ski Valley and area businesses. Additionally, Taos developed modules and trained its hundreds of employees on the resort’s COVID-Safe Practices early on.
^Courtesy: FACEBOOK/Taos Ski Valley
“Our staff was incredible this season and worked tirelessly to keep themselves, the community, and our guests free from COVID, which has devastated so many. We also credit success to the terrific and seamless collaboration with the Village of Taos Ski Valley, the Taos Ski Valley Chamber of Commerce and Mogul Medical urgent care,” said David Norden, CEO of Taos Ski Valley. “When we developed our COVID-Safe Practices in the fall we didn’t know what the season would bring. I’m incredibly proud of this team for what they accomplished. And I’m proud that we were able to deliver a positive outdoor experience for our guests, and be the source of critical economic activity for the community.”
While not always popular, limiting capacity on the mountain and lodging was also a critical factor, as was the resort’s investment in creating entirely new outdoor eating spaces and no-touch services, including its skier drop-off area, basket check, ticketing, ski school, and rental departments. Extensive communication to guests before and during their visits helped ensure they knew what to expect and complied with the new protocols.
“Our B Corp values compel us to put community and social responsibility at the forefront of every decision, and in this case, we demonstrated that commitment by going above and beyond the government requirements, investing in safety materials and equipment, and strictly enforcing our own rules despite the inconvenience or cost,” continued Norden. “Taos has been a beacon of hope for New Mexicans and outdoor enthusiasts during a particularly sad and difficult time in the world.”
^Courtesy: FACEBOOK/Taos Ski Valley
A little over one year ago, Taos was the first resort in the country to introduce a planned closing as the pandemic grew near. Its plans were accelerated as the virus began spreading aggressively through the US, at which time resorts throughout all of North America began to close en masse.
Taos plans to create COVID-Safe Protocols for its summer operations, and will follow similar plans for testing staff members and communicating with guests and the community.
“We hope next ski season will be pretty much normal, but until this devastating virus is eradicated, we’re committed to the wellbeing and health of all who work, live, or play at Taos,” said Norden.
Congrats to Taos on a great season. Here’s to hoping that things get back to normal next season!