I believe that, Lorenzo, but such "large number statistics" are little consolation to the individual who gets injured--even if he is just a point on an actuary's charts to the company. And I fully believe that lowering DIN settings can reduce some types of injuries, including perhaps knee injuries. I'll take their word on that. But knee injuries are not usually the consequence of "pre-release." Those consequences can be much more severe, including death as a result of a fall in a "no-fall-zone," or losing a ski and hitting a tree--or another skier.
Are they prepared to pay the price for those consequences? Do they just weigh those predictable costs against the predictable savings in knee-related Worker's Compensation claims?
I agree with you. Assuming they are acting rationally they realize they are assuming liability for pre-release situations when an employee is not on the clock because their equipment would be set to Vail's/typically prescribed specs.
Again assuming they are acting rationally they have looked at the actuarial exposure for both situations and this balance is in their interest in terms of liability. To me that's the interesting part. It does invite 4ster's solution for situations where it would make one feel uncomfortable about the risk of pre-release.