Continuing Operations Safely
MSAAs utmost priority is to ensure our clients safety in relation to COVID-19, just as our priority in our day-to-day operations is to ensure clients safety while travelling in the backcountry.
As per advice given by Avalanche Canada and the ACMG, MSAA feels comfortable in continuing to offer all its courses and adventures. We are confident that our COVID-19 protocols effectively reduce the risk of COVID-19 transmission, so that we may continue operations in a safe and responsible manner.
Lets safely learn this winter.
MSAA is very excited to explore and enjoy our beautiful wilderness with you, once again. More than ever, safety is on everyone’s mind and it remains our paramount concern. After all safety and unrivalled service are the cornerstone of MSAA’s impeccable reputation:
• A flawless, 29-year safety record you can depend on
• Recipient of the most prestigious award for customer satisfaction & service
• MSAA’s robust & dependable “2020 Covid-19 SOP (Safety Operational Procedures)”
The Public Health Authority has deemed that ASTs and other educational activities fit into the essential service category of “educational institutions”. Our classroom is large enough to accommodate 2m physical distancing for all clients and instructors, while we will also provide an online option for all clients. Our outdoor sessions are well within COVID-19 regulations.
While the province recommends limited travel to other communities, it is not completely restricted. As Whistler is part of the Vancouver Coastal Health region, and we believe these courses can be classed as an essential service, we will be going ahead with all scheduled courses.
We will be monitoring all public health information to assess if we can safely operate our programs according to applicable current guidance. If public health authorities deem backcountry use is contributing to worsening the state of COVID-19 transmission, we will consult with leading industry experts to change our approach, reduce our services or, if necessary, shut down as required to best serve public health.
What is MSAA Doing?
• Easy, dependable and practical 4 stage screening prior and during activity
• Providing 100% credit for any guest who feels ill on the day of their tour/ course or anyone who cannot travel for the course.
• Four stage check: (alongside disinfecting and physical distancing)
• Step 1: Government of Canada & BC Health Authorities (CDC, PHSA
& WCB) Covid-19 response, measures & travel restrictions
• Step 2: MSAA Online Assessment & Declaration of Health mandatory questionnaire
• Step 3: MSAA guide & staff Guest Assessment using Covid-19 Poster & App
• Step 4: MSAA guide trained to assess for symptoms during guiding
• Guides undertake a rigorous staff training which includes our newly implemented Covid-19 Safety Operating Procedures
• Our procedures include such protocols as:
• Very stringent guide self-assessment, declaration of health, self-sanitation/sanitization each and every shift
• Guide to demonstrate a Tour/course action while maintaining social distance and with help of one’s social “bubble” member, i.e. put harness on a youth
• Handling equipment or assisting a guest within 2 meters protocol: Both parties must shield nose and mouth (mask/ face cover, etc.). Keep it brief, avoid skin contact, avoid aligned nose/mouth, disinfect both parties’ hands immediately after
• All equipment will be thoroughly cleaned and disinfected before and after each client’s use.
• All MSAA guides & participants will endeavor to maintain social distancing while guiding and participating as much as is practical and reasonable while maintaining safety as a priority and considering social “bubbles”
• If you are partaking in a course with a classroom portion:
• MSAA will provide hand sanitizer for use throughout the day
• All surfaces will be disinfected prior to and after the day
• Access facilities such as doors will be kept open and/or handles regularly disinfected
• All to abide by recommended and regular hand washing and sanitizing when possible throughout the day
What we ask you to do:
• We encourage all clients to book online and contact us by phone or email.
• All clients will be asked to complete a self-check survey prior to the tour/course alongside signing a waiver with an attached COVID-19 clause.
• All clients must wash hands, followed by hand sanitizer (EDA approved hand sanitizer) prior to commencing guided activity.
• All guests must provide their own PPE (mask, gloves etc) to be used in enclosed spaces such as gondolas or when physical distancing cannot be maintained. Single use masks and gloves will be available for purchase.
• Bring your own food or drink
• Consider booking a private “bubble” tour