Franck, risk awareness

Having been a ski instructor for many years, Franck Paragot decided to get involved in prevention and education in the face of mountain risks. An A.N.E.N.A. trainer since 2022, he offers free "Snow and off-piste safety" conferences in Val d'Isère. His initiative, supported by the Tourist Office, is aimed at the general public, in response to a number of incidents that prompted him to take action to improve safety in the resort. An avid mountain and snowboard enthusiast, Franck sees off-piste as a way of finding freedom and solitude away from the busier slopes - provided he knows how!

During his presentations, he explains that this practice is not trivial and passes on his knowledge: understanding the mountain environment and avalanches, the equipment to have, the behavior to adopt... Indeed, off-piste is a delicate balance between the application of theoretical knowledge and the (re)actions acquired through experience. You have to be constantly vigilant and make choices according to the current context. To achieve this, the new digital tools (internet, exchange applications such as WhatsApp...) that enable you to update information throughout the day and exchange information in real time between professionals (guides, pisteurs...) are a real asset.

As Franck points out, guides are not guarantors of safety, but "managers of insecurity". Also a paragliding instructor, he draws a parallel between these two activities through renunciation. Despite our enthusiasm, curiosity and desire to surpass our sporting limits, we sometimes have to give up when we realize that conditions are no longer ripe for safe flying or skiing. This is a particularly difficult choice for guides on outings with overly reckless clients: despite the underlying financial stakes, you have to remain firm for everyone's safety.

In the future, he would like to offer his lectures in English to raise awareness among non-French speakers.

To attend a lecture: every Monday at 6pm at the Maison de Val.