Certified Patroller

The Eastern Division Certified program requires extensive study and preparation for candidates to be successful. Some of the things that candidates are required to master are:

  • Learn 8 knots so that you can tie them anytime, even in the dark.
  • Set up a 3:1 Z Pulley low angle rescue in less than 20 minutes.
  • Lift Evac – the process (from alert to completion) – the protocols (types of rope, harnesses, belay methods) – Understanding lifts and how they work (brakes, towers, sensors and even how the haul rope is constructed) What is a haul rope? Come and find out!!!
  • Management Interview – Do you know how to staff a patrol, how much equipment you need on the hill, how much that equipment costs, how much lift evac equipment is required, and a whole lot more!!
  • Hill Safety Interview – Why do we use bamboo? What are the protocols for closing a trail? What are the requirements for snowmobiles on the hill?
  • Find an avalanche beacon in less than 3 minutes, obviously, learn how to use them.  Sounds easy, doesn’t it?
  • OEC – practical – 3 patients, seriously injured – 20 minutes – triage, one problem as leader and two as a helper.
  • OEC bystander – One patient – two bystanders – a scenario you cannot do without their help.  Oh, by the way, the bystanders do not know any first aid. Your patient may need CPR – think about it – no patrol help for 20 minutes.
  • OEC written test – 100 questions.
  • Avalanche written test – 50 questions.
  • Skiing and Toboggan handling.

A schedule of available Certified Program events can be found on the Eastern Division CALENDAR.  The Certified Program is a test of your patrolling capabilities and knowledge base. It is a unique opportunity to learn from others, to broaden your experience and sharpen your skills. Through a series of specific steps, a Certified Candidate is reviewed and qualified to participate in the annual Certified Test. The Certified exam is an intensive 3-day event that tests all aspects of a candidate’s patrolling skills.

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Applying for Certified Patroller Candidacy

If you are applying as a member of the National Ski Patrol

Register for an official Eastern Division sponsored “Certified Patroller School.” The most prominent Certified schools in close proximity to New Hampshire is the:

Summer Certified Patroller School, Harrison, Maine

At the Certified School you will learn about all the requirement to successfully petition for entry into the three-day annual exam. Visit the Eastern Division Calendar for registration details.

Application to the program requires six written essays:

  1. Why do you want to become a Certified Patroller?
  2. What do you expect to gain from the Certified Program?
  3. What benefits can the Certified Program and the NSP expect to gain from your participation?
  4. Do you participate in training local Patrollers or Senior Candidates? What do you contribute to your local patrol beyond your required shifts? Are you involved in Lift Evacuation training, CPR training, OEC training, or training of any kind?
  5. Do you have aspirations to assume a leadership position in your patrol, the region or division?
  6. How does your professional career benefit from your patrol activities or how do your patrol activities benefit from your professional career?

Two letters of recommendation from existing Certified Patrollers are required. Certified members composing letters are required to be as thorough as possible and will include direct knowledge of the applicant’s abilities and qualifications. Most Certified Patrollers will need to get to know you prior to sponsoring your nomination. The Certified Program’s Credentials Committee members rely on the content and extent of the letters when considering accepting applicants into the program. Hence the reason that entry into the program begins at a Certifed School. It is recommended that you attend one of the many dry-land summer-based Certified Schools for the best chance of obtaining sponsorship.

Attendance at one on-snow Certified Pre-Test. Visit the Eastern Division Calendar for registration details.  The most prominent Certified Pre-Tests in close proximity to New Hampshire are:

January Certified Patroller Pre-Test, Sunday River, Maine
February Certified Patroller Pre-Test, Killington, Vermont

Send all required forms and letters to the NSP Certified Credentials Committee Chairperson by mid-February. The Credentials Committee reviews all applications and recommends prior to granting entry into the exam.

If you are applying through the reciprocity agreement between the Professional Ski Patrol Association and National Ski Patrol:

Contact the PSPA Secretary and obtain an “Application for Reciprocal Membership.”

Provide a letter of recommendation from the current PSPA President attesting your status as a member in good standing.

Provide a “Letter of Introduction” outlining what your commitment to the NSP Certified Program will be, and how you plan on becoming involved to help NSP preserve and strengthen the Certified Program.

Provide a letter of recommendation from your Patrol Director.

Send all required forms and letters to the NSP Certified Credentials Committee Chairperson by mid-February. The Credentials Committee reviews all applications and recommends prior to granting entry into the exam.

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Carl Chaplin, NH Region Certified Advisor

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