In Colorado, early on Thursday morning, a Texas mother, 40, died and her two young daughters, 9 and 12, were injured during a ski lift fall. The fatal accident occurred at Ski Granby Ranch, located approximately 90 miles west of Denver. The woman and her two daughters fell about 20 feet into snow from a four-person ski lift at the 400-acre family oriented resort.
NBC affiliate WGRZ reported that the woman and her two young daughters fell from the Quickdraw Lift when it was halfway up the slope, at approximately 9:30 a.m. One of the daughters was transported to a local hospital where she was listed in stable condition. FOX News reported that the woman’s other daughter was airlifted to Children’s Hospital in suburban Denver. WGRZ, reported that the daughter who was in stable condition has been discharged from the hospital.
The names of the woman and her daughters have not been released by Colorado investigators, and they have also not speculated on what happened that caused the family to fall from the ski lift. Officer Schelly Olson, a spokeswoman for the police, said that state regulators who oversee chairlifts will aid in the investigation.
Ski Granby Ranch is promoted as a family friendly resort. Besides being about 90 miles from Denver, Granby Ranch is also “located approximately 20 miles west of Winter Park.”
Though ski lifts can be dangerous, deaths and injuries from malfunctions and falls, according to CBS Denver are rare in the United States. From 1973 through October 2016, according to the National Ski Areas Association (NSAA), there were just 12 deaths due to ski lift malfunctions in the United States. The last death caused by a ski lift malfunction, according to the NSAA occurred in 1993.
Between 2004 and October 2016, three people died as a result of falling off a ski lift. The death of the Texas woman occurred during one of the busiest weeks of the season for ski resorts in Colorado. An investigation is ongoing as detectives try to determine whether the ski lift malfunctioned or if there was some other cause that resulted in the Texas woman’s death.
By John Samuels
Photo Courtesy Granby Ranch