01-10-2005, 05:08 AM
sounds crazy, but no details in the article,
"An avalanche Sunday afternoon killed a 13-year-old boy after knocking him from a ski lift at the Las Vegas Ski & Snowboard Resort, 45 miles northwest of Las Vegas. No other injuries have been reported."
Yahoo News Article (http://story.news.yahoo.com/news?tmpl=story2&u=/ap/20050110/ap_on_re_us/storm_rdp)
01-12-2005, 09:41 PM
Found in Las Vegas Review-Journal
Since Sunday's deadly slide, two more avalanches have shaken loose from mountainsides at the Las Vegas Ski and Snowboard Resort, damaging a ski lift and two lift towers, resort officials said Tuesday.
Resort general manager Brian Strait said the new avalanches were discovered by investigators probing the death of a 13-year-old snowboarder who was swept from a ski lift by a wall of plummeting snow.
After the death of Brett Hutchison on Sunday, federal regulators ordered the Lee Canyon ski resort closed until an avalanche fatality review team from the National Avalanche Center investigates the disaster.
Strait said the two recent avalanches swept down different slopes from the mountainside where Hutchison lost his life in what is believed to be the first fatal avalanche inside a U.S. ski resort in years.
One of the slides damaged the lift and lift towers. The other crashed down on an undeveloped area, Strait said.
Officials reported at least two other small avalanches near the Kyle Canyon subdivision of Echo Canyon on Tuesday, prompting Las Vegas police to recommend residents evacuate their homes.
The slides, which caused no injuries or serious property damage, bring to at least six the number of avalanches that have rumbled down slopes in the Spring Mountains during the past three days.
Strait said he didn't know what effect the additional avalanches at the ski resort would have on a timetable for reopening.
"We don't have a lot of those details right now," he said. "We need to look more carefully at the damage ... and then start to investigate what it will take to make repairs."
Investigators will resume their probe today at the resort.
Police said their evacuation notices, which were also distributed to residents in Old Town in upper Kyle Canyon, were not mandatory and might be lifted at midnight. Authorities believed unusually heavy snowfall on Mount Charleston, combined with other conditions, make the area prone to more avalanches.
Lundy Elementary School on Mount Charleston was closed Tuesday. Clark County School District officials didn't know Tuesday evening whether it would reopen this morning, district spokeswoman Pat Nelson said.
Marc and Lorelei Biggins, who had yet to heed authorities' recommendations, had their snow-bound Mount Charleston neighborhood to themselves late Tuesday.
"I'm just using my experience," said Marc Biggins, a seasoned outdoorsman and volunteer for the Metropolitan Police Department's search and rescue team. "I've been checking back here (at the mountain) every hour. ... We've got our bags packed and we're ready to go. But we're playing it by ear."
Several Old Town residents said they had not been asked to leave, and would stay put because they did not believe the mountain above them was vulnerable to an avalanche.
Tuesday afternoon, a police officer cruised icy stretches of State Route 157, stopping to advise visitors who were playing in the snow to leave. It proved a tedious task. Each time the officer departed, a new crop of snow revelers arrived.
By nightfall, however, state Routes 156, 157, 158 were closed at U.S. Highway 95 to all traffic except Mount Charleston residents and emergency personnel.
Authorities also had a blockade at Echo Road, where the Bigginses were rethinking their stance on evacuating the affluent ghost town created by the threat of more slides.
Marc Biggins, who participated in the search and rescue effort that found Hutchison's body, said unlike many of his neighbors, his mountain home is his primary residence.
While realizing the avalanche threat will exist for most of the winter, he also wondered what would happen if disaster struck and he needed to be rescued.
"We're not going to put anybody in jeopardy," he said. "We'll probably leave."
From what I've heard, the article is going easy on the damage to the lift. I'm hearing that it actually moved the bullwheel!!
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