Wednesday, January 07, 2009

Skier suffers serious exposure

This happened New Years Day and, though not truly newsworthy given current world events, most skiers will attest it's likely the first incident of its kind. As an avid skier myself, I would rate what befell this gentleman just a notch or two less serious than, say, breaking one's leg. For the unabashed, more images and an incomplete summary of events that led to this man's predicament may be found here, though the meat of that report follows:
JANUARY 6--In a bizarre incident that will surely lead to litigation (or an out-of-court settlement), a skier at Colorado's ritzy Vail resort was left dangling upside down and pantsless from a chairlift last Thursday morning. The January 1 mishap apparently occurred after the male skier, 48, and a child boarded a high-speed lift in Vail's Blue Sky Basin. It appears that the chairlift's fold-down seat was somehow not in the lowered position, which caused the man to partially fall through the resulting gap. His right ski got jammed in the ascending chairlift, and that kept him upended since his boot never dislodged from its binding.

The Skyline Express lift was stopped shortly after the pair's botched boarding resulted in the man dangling from the lift. The exposed skier was stuck for about 15 minutes before Vail personnel backed the lift up and successfully dislodged the unidentified man from the four-seat chair.
Clearly one of those situations where all modesty, pride, and decorum disappear, but I'm wondering if Skier X tried to calm his child while hanging upside down sans pants, declaring with all the authority he could muster, "Don't worry, sweetie, everything's under control. The ski patrol will have us down in a few minutes. I'm fine, fine. Just keep looking at the trees...."


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