More Problems at Aviemore Ski Area as Funicular Closed Indefinitely

More Problems at Aviemore Ski Area as Funicular Closed Indefinitely
Started by J2SkiNews in Ski News - 4 Replies
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Re:More Problems at Aviemore Ski Area as Funicular Closed Indefinitely
02-Oct
J2SkiNews


The CairnGorm funicular railway, which is the main lift at Aviemore ski area in Scotland, has been shut down "as a safety precaution" whilst further investigations are carried out into new concerns raised in a recent routine inspection, the resorts owners, the state body Highlands & Islands Enterprise have said.

The concerns relate to concrete structures supporting the track which are reported to have developed cracks. According to a report in the local Strathspey Herald newspapers the cracks were first identified in 2016 and have since got worse.

"Engineers recommended a reduced service be implemented until this is investigated fully and any remedial work carried out. They further recommended a number of operation limiting procedures including temperature, windspeed and the load on the train," a statement from Highlands and Islands Enterprise reads.

The organisation says it has commissioned specialist engineers to carry out a detailed structural assessment of the area of concern but that the findings of the detailed investigations are unlikely to be known until November, making it appear unlikely that remedial work can be completed before the ski season.
"Our priority is to get a clear picture of any faults with the funicular in order to develop a course of action that addresses these concerns," Said Ewan Kearney, Chief Operating Officer at CairnGorm Mountain, adding, "At this stage, we are unable to provide a detailed timeline for the re-opening of the funicular and will issue further updates as we are able to do so."

"We are treating this as extremely urgent and doing all we can to address the problem and have the funicular returned to full service as quickly as possible. In the meantime, safety must come first and we fully respect CML's decision to act on the precautionary advice of the inspectors," said Susan Smith, HIE's head of business development.

Cairngorm has faced a number of issues in recent years and has seen its skier numbers decline whilst other Scottish areas have seen growth. One move by the centre's owners/operators that proved particularly unpopular was the closure of the Coire na Ciste section of the ski area which was popularly regarded as offering some of the area's best terrain and the closure of which dramatically cut the skiing available. A multi-year campaign to have the lifts reinstated was further set back when the old lifts were demolished without warning last year when the operators had appeared to be in negotiations about their future with local interest groups.
www  The Snow Hunter
03-Oct
SwingBeep
According to a recent post on Facebook CML say that the current issue is not related to issues previously identified in the track support beams.



As it has resulted in immediate closure the issue must be pretty serious.

The advocates of the reinstatment of the of the Coire na Ciste chairlifts don't seem to be aware that according to EU Cableways Regulation 2016/424 before a ski lift that has been taken out of operation can be put back into operation it must be upgraded to meet the current safety standards. Due to the age and condition of the Coire na Ciste chairlifts this would probably have been prohibitively expensive.
12-Oct
Brucie
Reliance on the funicular was always going to be the death of skiing at Cairngorm, as the other lifts were allowed to fall into disrepair and even removal.
An ill conceived vanity project like so many from politicians these days.
I guess that's it then.
Well done.
"Better to remain reticent and have people think one is an idiot, than to open ones mouth and remove all doubt"
13-Oct
J2SkiNews
SwingBeep wrote:According to a recent post on Facebook CML say that the current issue is not related to issues previously identified in the track support beams.



As it has resulted in immediate closure the issue must be pretty serious.

The advocates of the reinstatment of the of the Coire na Ciste chairlifts don't seem to be aware that according to EU Cableways Regulation 2016/424 before a ski lift that has been taken out of operation can be put back into operation it must be upgraded to meet the current safety standards. Due to the age and condition of the Coire na Ciste chairlifts this would probably have been prohibitively expensive.


...this may be the case but HIE seem to be able to find millions for a dry slope, consultants and all weather snowmaking, plus smaller budget areas like Glencoe and Glenshee have both managed to raise funding to install 'new' (second hand) chairlifts over the past few seasons ...so it seems to be more a case of investment priorities than actually prohibitively expensive? Not that I actually know the internal workings of the area so all speculation on my part! If you lose half a ski area (and many feel the best half) and your skier numbers/income drop as a result whilst numbers at the other four areas increase are you not just on a downward spiral? Throw in to the mix that fact that you give millions of public money to an operator that doesn't seem to need to do anything that reverses the decline to keep receiving the millions and it doesn't seem like a very wise way to run a ski area? I suppose similar issues currently faced by hundreds/thousands of small-mid size ski areas with elderly lifts across Europe/North America.
www  The Snow Hunter
13-Oct
Brucie
Scottish skiers will happily see Cairngorm go to the wall. They have been chased away ever since the funicular appeared.
Aviemore fortunately has reinvented itself as a summer resort, largely ignoring the decline of the ski facilities.
"Better to remain reticent and have people think one is an idiot, than to open ones mouth and remove all doubt"

Topic last updated on 13-October-2018 at 11:40

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