Resort riding may not appear risky compared to backcountry skiing, but it has its hazards. Lots of downhill skiing time increases the probability of having an accident while skiing, and ski lifts can be dangerous if not used correctly. Ski areas are also typically very busy with people of varying skill levels—the implication: injuries due to collisions.
But, ski areas have codes of conduct implied when purchasing a lift pass. There are maps, signage, rope lines, cut and groomed trails, gladed runs, and maintained ski runs. There are emergency clinics available for injuries and lodges to rest in and get food and water. Terrain is opened and closed based on hazards deemed risky by professionals, who help mitigate avalanche hazard. There are also mountain hosts and patrollers to offer direction, assistance, or quick medical attention. All these factors and more lead to a predictable day once acquainted with the area, therefore, these elements establish an amount of safety—or margin—to the hostile winter mountain environment. Because of this margin, the mindset can be a little more relaxed regarding self-sufficiency, awareness of the avalanche hazard, and the need to navigate complexities.
Areas of concern may be rider-rider accidents. Knowing the code of conduct, properly using ski lifts, and using protective equipment are essential factors to minimizing this concern. Considering the mentioned points, reading the back of a lift ticket, and looking at trail maps will all help frame a resort mindset.