Gusting winds spin chair lifts at Italian ski resort: ‘Total panic and fear’


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Chair lifts at an Italian ski resort in the Swiss Alps were captured on video twisting and turning after being blasted by sudden gusts of wind while at least two people were still riding in the chairs on Thursday.

Onlookers recorded video of the frightening incident at the Cervino Ski Paradise in Breuil-Cervinia, a popular tourist resort at the foot of the Matterhorn in the Swiss Alps.

Andy Crabtree, one skier who shared video, posted on social media that 10 chairs on the lift were damaged and taken out of service by the time the lift reopened the following day.

Barnaby Dunning, an experienced skier who was stuck in a chair lift with a friend at the time, told ABC’s “Good Morning America” on Monday that wind conditions reached up to 70 miles per hour. The skier said he felt like he was in a washing machine and had “multiple moments of total panic and fear.”

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Gusting winds nearly swing a chair on the lift upside down. (Andy Crabtree via Storyful)

“I never even knew chair lifts could rotate the way that they were rotating,” Dunning said. “You’re just getting thrown around all over the place.”

Onlookers recorded video of the frightening incident at the Cervino Ski Paradise in Breuil-Cervinia, a popular tourist resort at the foot of the Matterhorn in the Swiss Alps. (Andy Crabtree via Storyful)

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The resort told the BBC in a statement that the ski lift was closed due to poor weather conditions and those still on the lift were the last skiers making their way to the upper station. 

Cervino Ski Paradise is seen in 2020

This photograph taken on Nov. 28, 2020, shows a net closing the ski slope of the Cervino Ski Paradise at the Swiss border between Switzerland and Italy. (FABRICE COFFRINI/AFP via Getty Images)

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All the skiers “all reached their destination safely,” the statement said per the outlet.



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