The Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) has launched a campaign to raise awareness of the dangers of alcohol abuse in ski resorts and to encourage skiers to take out full insurance cover when on such holidays.
The campaign, initiated after several accidents in ski resorts directly related to alcohol abuse by young people, aims to highlight the dangers of the effects of alcohol at high altitudes, which can affect people more quickly and limit awareness of danger and cold.
It will take the form of posters displayed in restaurants, bars, airports and other public spaces.
Leaflets and display material will also be available for British tour operator-owned chalets, club hotels and bars.
The campaign is being supported by the French police and rescue services, tourist offices and airports in the regions of Savoie, Haute Savoie, Isere and Rhone.
Geneva airport, several major Swiss ski resorts, Italy, and TUI’s ski companies are also backing the campaign.
The launch comes as research by price comparison site Confused.com revealed alarming figures on the number of skiers who drink to excess during skiing holidays.
According to the study, one in four skiers are affected by drunks on the slopes; over 26% of 31 to 35-year-olds drink more than two glasses of wine before skiing; 35% of men drink and ski; and over 41% of over-30s think they are covered for accidents when drinking.
The two groups most likely to drink on a skiing holiday are men aged between 21 and 35, with 35% of males saying they drink heavily and regularly during ski holidays and one in four 31 to 35 years admitting they do the same.
At a time when 20% of those surveyed said they noticed more skiers on the slopes, one in 10 people also reported an increase in aggression between users and intoxicated people while skiing.