“Look out below!”
You can hear the familiar refrain shouted from the top of any of Airdrie’s more popular tobogganing hills – and not always in children’s voices.
The City of Airdrie website lists three designated toboggan hills in town, located in Chinook Winds Regional Park, Cooper’s Crossing at Cooper’s Crescent and Cooper’s Drive, as well as Osborne Park at and Windford Drive and Windsong Boulevard.
There are other popular hills around town, such as at East Lake and, for smaller kids, the small hill that slopes down to the frozen pond by the tennis courts in Summerhill, but they’re not inspected or approved by the City.
There are a few simple common-sense precautions you can take to stay safe on Airdrie toboggan hills, such as don’t toboggan onto roadways or where there are obstacles such as fences, trees, goalposts, rocks, etc., dress for the weather, and know when it’s just too darn cold to go out.
In addition, Alberta Health Services would like to remind parents and sledders of all ages of the following sledding safety tips.
- Always ensure your toboggan, or sledding device, is in good repair. Inspect it for any damaged or missing parts before each use;
- Be certain the operator is fully capable of staying in control of the sled at all times;
- Wear a ski helmet designed for use in cold weather and high speeds.
- Avoid hills that are too steep or icy;
- Choose hills free of all obstacles such as trees, rocks, utility poles, benches, or fences;
- Beware of loose scarves, or clothing containing drawstrings, which could present a strangulation hazard if they become caught or snagged;
- Look out for others. Move quickly to the side after finishing a run and stay to the side of the sliding path when walking up the hill;
- Children should be supervised by an adult; try not to toboggan alone;
- Sledding at night is not advised.