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Dio mio piano! Piano!

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Alberto Tomba once insisted that a good bottle of wine was the key to a successful training day. It looks like Tomba’s countrymen may be overtraining. “One shot of grappa or whiskey after lunch is one thing, but when you have lots of grappa you lose control,” Commander Alvaro de Palma, who heads a police alpine center in northern Italy, told the BBC. De Palma is calling for a campaign targeting on-snow drunkenness, which would be one part of a larger attempt to regulate slope safety in Italy. Anyone under 14 is already required to wear a helmet, while a new law would mandate that off-piste skiers carry avalanche beacons. One skier at the Terminillo resort identified drunkenness as a regional problem. “In the north of Italy, where they drink more, whenever they stop skiing they go for a grappa.”

JANUARY 2005