New Mexico ski areas must submit testing plans to state before reopening | KOB 4

New Mexico ski areas must submit testing plans to state before reopening

Ryan Laughlin
Updated: December 02, 2020 06:36 PM
Created: December 02, 2020 05:34 PM

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — Lots of fresh snow covered the slopes at Ski Santa Fe Wednesday, but the lifts were left stagnant. 

"They're feeling anxious,”’ said George Brooks, executive director of Ski New Mexico.

Brooks said local ski areas are eager to get things going, but still have one more obstacle they need to clear. 

"We had to participate in surveillance testing on an ongoing basis. We found out about that Friday, with the health order being issued on Monday, and it becomes effective today. So since then, we've been scrambling to put together a plan,” Brooks said. 

Brooks said every employee at a New Mexico ski area will be required to get tested every two weeks, which is a big undertaking. 

"The ski industry statewide employs about 3,200 people just at the ski areas. Taos Ski Area, for example, when they're up and going can employ somewhere between 700 and 900 people,” Brooks said. 

Every ski area must submit a testing plan to the state. Brooks said they’re awaiting final approval before opening, which makes it difficult to pinpoint an exact opening date. 

"It's hard to say right now,” he said. “I would say within a week. It could be as early as this weekend. It may not be until next week that some of our ski areas will get open."

Mask-wearing, social distancing and capacity limits will be enforced when the lifts start turning. 

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