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Boy fell 20 to 30 feet from lift at Ragged Mountain

Father recounts watching son fall from chairlift

BENNINGTON, N.H. —An investigation is underway at Crotched Mountain ski area in Bennington after a woman and a child fell 40 feet from a chairlift.

A mother and her 9-year-old daughter fell from the chairlift about 4:30 p.m. Wednesday, officials said. Fire officials said they suffered serious injuries.

Watch NewsCenter 5’s report

Officials have not released their names. The victims were conscious when first responders arrived.

One victim was flown to Dartmouth Hitchcock Medical Center, while the other was taken by ambulance to Monadnock Hospital.

They fell about halfway up the mountain on what’s known as Pluto’s Trail.

“They don’t have a lot of snow out there, so there’s only 2, 3 inches at this time,” said Bennington Fire Chief Mike Rowina.

The lift was stopped while officials took the victims from the mountain. It was restarted, after an initial inspection, to remove the other skiers.

Two state tramway safety inspectors were brought in to look at the lift, which doesn’t appear to have malfunctioned.

“There’s no indication at this time to indicate that there was a mechanical problem,” said Keith Rodenhiser of the State Fire Marshal’s Office.

Crotched Mountain General Manager Patrick Terry said he believes the problem was what workers call a “mislead” when the two were put on the chairlift. While it’s not clear what caused the two to fall from the lift, Terry said the lifts are designed to prevent accidents such as this from happening.

“What’s important when you get on the chair lift is that you make sure you put the safety bar down,” Terry said. “It’s nearly impossible to fall out of the chair.”