Technical Ropeway Conference VTK/SBS A Success

360° safety was the motto of this year's technical cable car conference, which took place from September 12th to 14th, 2022 in Lugano. In addition to the comradely exchange, the technical side, with the varied presentations on the industry, was not neglected.
In his welcoming address, Andreas Zenger, President of the VTK, was pleased to be able to hold the Technical Cable Car Conference Switzerland VTK/SBS again in Ticino after 14 years. The organizing committee, headed by Luca Jardini, has done everything to ensure that the participants in Lugano can experience an optimal event in the spacious premises in the Palazzo dei congressi and this in the best weather conditions.
The representatives of the supervisory authorities BAV, Urs Bürgi, and IKSS, Ulrich Blessing, were the first speakers and informed about the events of the past year as well as about safety-related topics, such as the new rope ordinance, about boarding and alighting areas of chairlifts, but also about the Safety awareness of those responsible. The director Berno Stoffel from Seilbahnen Schweiz (SBS) was able to look back on the best winter season since the 2008/09 winter season. After successful enforcement with the authorities to maintain operating hours due to the pandemic throughout the past winter season, a similar challenge is now pending. With regard to a possible impending power shortage, the SBS is working with a working group to do everything so that the industry will be spared from a possible power cut. As with the Covid pandemic, a coordinated approach is being taken at federal level under the leadership of the SBS.
Angelo Trotta, director of Ticino Turismo, presented the tourist trump cards of the southern canton. Alex Malinverno, President of the UTPT Association, presented his association, which today consists of four railway companies, five bus companies, twenty-one cable cars and one shipping company. The task of the association, which was founded in 2003, is to represent the interests of the members externally. Philipp Bernhard, safety expert from SUVA in Lucerne, explained what needs to be considered when working alone. An exciting presentation was given by Simon Jauch, Head of SisITServices at Sisag in Schattdorf. He informed how IT security in operation can be increased in connection with security and availability, which should balance each other out. Kaspar Seiler,
A highlight of the event was the presentation of diplomas to the 52 newest ropeway specialists by the President of the Examination Committee, Fabian Imboden from Zermatt. After 18 months of extra-occupational instruction, several intermediate exams and the professional exam, they are now qualified to exercise due diligence and operational safety in a cable car company. Celina Kaiser from Zermatt was the only woman to receive her diploma, and she is only the fourth woman to be trained as a ropeway specialist.
After the award ceremony, the VTK General Assembly took place. On the agenda item elections, board member Markus Good, Obersaxen, was replaced by Thomas Brunner, Engadin St. Moritz Mountains. Mirielle Salm was introduced as the successor to the longstanding secretary of VTK, Anita Widmer. The next conference is expected to take place in Gstaad from September 13th to 15th, 2023. Now there was enough time to exchange ideas with colleagues but also to be able to view the products of the 58 exhibitors before dinner was served in the Palazzo dei congressi in Lugano.
The final day began with a presentation by Marc Ziegler, head of the SBS training center in Meiringen, on the subject of how the type of training for the learners has changed. The rest of the presentations dealt with the topic of ropes and rope technology. dr Ing. Konstantin Kühner, Jakob Rope Systems, informed about the basics of the lay length and its function and dimensions. He went on to explain in great detail about rope torque and twist and what can be done about it.
Philippe Bieri and Oliver Reinelt, Fatzer AG from Romanshorn, explained what can be learned from the operation of urban cable cars for the operation of tourist cable cars. After these interesting presentations, the visitors had the opportunity to choose between excursions to San Salvatore or Monte Brè, which gave this unique conference a worthy conclusion.
Source: VTK - Association of Technical Managers of Swiss Cable Cars

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