Sugarloaf Ski Lift Collapse: Chair Lift Derailment
Maine Ski Lift Failure: 20-30 People Injured
Hundreds of people are trapped on a chair lift at the Sugarloaf ski resort in Maine. The ski lift cable derailed from one of the towers, causing several people to plunge 30 feet down into the snow. The rest of the skiers and boarders on the chair lift are now stuck and awaiting rescue.
A witness has been on the phone with CNN from the ski lift itself, describing the situation. The Sugarloaf ski lift derailment took place around 10:30am EDT.
Currently, 30-50mph winds are complicating rescue efforts, as is deep snow. Rescuers will have to belay the trapped skiers down one by one. Conditions are deep: Sugarloaf got 22 inches of snow from the recent storm.
Rescuers were swiftly bringing stranded skiers down from the broken-down chairlift at western Maine's Sugarloaf Mountain resort, CNN Newsoure employee Robb Atkinson said.
"It's incredibly organized. They know what they're doing," Atkinson said while still suspended 30 to 40 feet above the ground. "... They're moving incredibly fast."
The accident occurred on the resort's Spillway East slope, which runs all the way to the top of the mountain, Maureen Atkinson said.