SAN FRANCISCO (KGO) -- Given certain conditions, avalanches are a risk on snow-covered mountains.
Mike Reitzell, president of the Petaluma-based organization Ski California, said Wednesday was a tough day.
"There's a profound sadness that goes across the industry and there's so much passion in skiing and riding, people care about other people that want to be part of this," Reitzell said.
Ski California represents 36 resorts in California and Nevada.
Reitzell says the one thing they all have in common is: they do not compromise on safety.
"The same things that resorts do on a daily basis, they're going to do that - they're going to analyze the snowpack, they're going to look at the weather, they're going to look at historical data," Reitzell said.
Bay Area ski and sporting goods stores sell avalanche safety equipment like Outback Adventures in Fremont.
Recco is a rescue technology that can locate people buried or lost outdoors.
For many brands, it's already embedded in jackets or backpacks.
"I think everything that I wear just has a Recco in it. I haven't even tried to necessarily do that but almost all the gear just comes with it these days. Which is great because resorts have the ability to find those wherever they are, so that's a very helpful tool for sure," Reitzell said.
Safety gear may not prevent the power of a deadly snow slide, but it could help locate someone.
"Just be prepared for the types of conditions that are out there, know your limit, know your ability on the mountain as well," Reitzell said.
In 2017, Ski California created a Mountain Safety Guide so resorts can provide a common message of safety to educate skiers and riders.
"We'd love people to read that and take those things you learn on the guide down to the mountain," Reitzell said.
This year, Ski California will be holding their 6th Annual Safety Day and it will take place on Jan. 27.
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