There will be many thousands of holidaymakers planning their ski holidays to resorts across the globe this winter, and if this blog makes even just one holidaymaker read this and take heed, then I know this will have been worth writing. I felt the need to write after tragic news that Rachel Ward, a Durham University student, aged just 20, had died whilst on holiday in Val d’Isere, a top French ski resort in the Alps. Rachel was enjoying a night out with her fellow students in a local bar, before deciding to return to the apartment alone whilst her friends headed to a club. When leaving the bar, she mistakenly took a left turn, instead of a right, and therefore ended up headed out of town rather than back to the accommodation. After realising she was now lost, it is thought that Rachel turned back and began walking in the direction she had come, but it is believed that she slipped down a 30ft snow bank and into the river Isere, where she died of hypothermia, despite being suitably clothed for the icy conditions and not being under the influence of alcohol (unlike many other revellers).