A man has survived a significant fall while on The Gunbarrel Express at Thredbo chairlift in the NSW Snowy Mountains — plunging metres onto the snow below.
– A man sustains bruising after a chairlift falls 5 metres onto snow on the Gunbarrel Express at Thredbo
– Thredbo management say a “freak gust of wind” caused the chair to dislodge and fall
= It follows a similar incident on the same chairlift in 2016
– The skier was on a chairlift on the Gunbarrel Express, nearing the top of the mountain, when the chair became dislodged from the cable above and plummeted to the ground.
The skier walked away with minor bruising.
In a statement, Thredbo Ski Resort management said the man was travelling on his own at the top of the chairlift when a “freak gust of wind” caused the chair to dislodge from the cable and fall.
“The guest involved in the incident sustained minor bruising only,” a spokeswoman said.
“No other guests or chairs were affected.”
Thredbo management said the Gunbarrel Express chairlift was on standby, and SafeWork NSW confirmed it was undertaking an assessment of the chairlift.
“Following notification of a chairlift incident at Thredbo ski fields, SafeWork inspectors, supported by independent engineers, are undertaking an assessment of the chairlift,” the spokeswoman said.
“The chairlift was subject to a non-disturbance order once passengers had safely disembarked.
“The non-disturbance order will remain in place until investigations, which are ongoing, are complete.”
A severe weather warning for vigorous winds is current over the Snowy Mountains today, with a strong cold front bringing blizzard conditions.
A similar incident was reported in 2016, when a chair fell off the same lift in the same spot while it was operating.
On that occasion a “freak gust of wind” was also cited as the cause, although the chair involved was not carrying passengers.
The incident prompted a thorough safety inspection of all cables on the Gunbarrel Express.
Source: ABC South East NSW