March 03, 2014 - 11:17 AM
WEST KELOWNA – Four people have been rushed to Kelowna General Hospital after the cable on the ski lift derailed sending their chairs plummeting to the ground at Crystal Mountain Resort near West Kelowna Saturday morning.
Two of the people are in critical condition and two have minor injuries according to Ben Mittelsteadt with the B.C. Ambulance Service.
He says they were called by resort staff at about 11 a.m.
“One of the patients in critical condition was taken by air ambulance to Kelowna General,” Mittelsteadt says. “The other patient in critical condition was taken by an advance life support ground ambulance.”
There are reports the victims suffered multiple fractures.
The people with minor injuries were also taken to hospital to be checked out.
An empty chair hit a ski lift tower and fell about 7 metres to the ground taking the cable and 2 other chairs with it, Global Okanagan reports. The chair that hit the tower was empty, but the other chairs were carrying two other people each.
According to the report, the victims include a ski instructor, two volunteer ski patrol personnel and a 16-year-old boy.
The ski lift has been in operation since 1967 and gets regular maintenance and safety inspections.
The resort’s General Manager Mike Morin hasn’t returned calls from InfoTel News.
The B.C. Safety Authority will be investigating.
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- This story was updated at 3:25 p.m. to include details about the accident.
- This story was updated at 12:54 p.m. to include a contributed photo and comments from the B.C. Ambulance Service.
News from © InfoTel News Ltd, 2014