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4 DIE IN SEPARATE SKI ACCIDENTS IN USA
Friday December 30, 2016 - Email this article to a friend

A mother fell to her death from a chairlift in Colorado, a skier hit a tree in Utah, another skier died in an avalanche in Washington State & the body of a missing snowboarder has been found in Wyoming. UPDATED

A 40-year old mother from Texas was riding a 4-person chairlift in the small resort of Ski Granby Ranch when all three fell.

She has been named as Kelly Huber from San Antonio.

Both the children, aged 9 and 12, were also treated in hospital.

The 12-year-old has been released but the 9-year-old remains at the Children's Hospital in Denver.

Her condition has not been released by the hospital authorities.

They plunged 7m but it is not clear what caused the accident.

The lift had a safety bar but unconfirmed reports from eyewitnesses said it had not been lowered.

A man who was three chairs behind, Allen McGirl, made these comments on Facebook.

"I am so sad to have witnessed the 3 people fall off the chair lift at Granby Ranch this morning. If only the mother would have lowered the safety bar, this would not have happened. Now the mother is dead and the two little girls will never be the same. My heart goes out to their family," he posted.

His comments are being investigated.

The accident took place on the Quickdraw lift and an investigation is underway.

She died of a traumatic rupture of the aorta and blunt force trauma to the torso, according to a Grand County Coroner's office report.

The resort is about 90 miles west of Denver and promotes itself as a family-friendly resort.

Deaths from chairlifts at US ski areas are rare.

There have been three deaths from falls since 2004 and the most recent death blamed on a faulty chairlift was in 1993.

The last fatal lift accident in Colorado was in 2002 when the manager of Winter Park Ski Resort fell 15m from a lift.

In 1976, four people were killed when the cables became entangled in a gondola at Vail.

In 1985 two people died at Keystone Resort after the welding on the wheel used to pull the cable broke.

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In Utah a man crashed into a tree in the resort of Snowbasin. 

He had been skiing on his own and he was found by another passing skier who alerted the emergency services.

Due to bad weather a helicopter was unable to fly so the man had to be taken off the mountain by the ski patrol and an ambulance drove him to hospital where he died from his injuries.

An investigation is being carried out.

Further west in Washington State man has died in an avalanche after recent heavy snow.

31-year old Adam Roberts was skiing with a friend out of bounds in the White Pass Ski Resort.

He was with a friend when they split up and took different routes.

He was found under 2m of snow after a search operation and an investigation is now underway.

Next of kin have been informed.

For more details about Adam Roberts, who was a well known and respected local skier, then see here.

While on Thursday 29th the body of a missing snowboarder was found in the Jedediah Smith Wilderness near the Grand Targhee ski area of Wyoming.

34-year old Lee Kidd had been reported missing on 23rd December when he failed to arrive for work.

He was found buried in the snow at the base of a cliff which it is believed he fell over.

The rescue services have been praised for the extensive search they carried out over the holiday season.

See here for the main PlanetSKI news page with all the latest stories from the world of snowsports.

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