A 6-year-old girl died in an accident while skiing in Val Saint-Comte
The accident reportedly happened around 9:30 a.m. when the girl was using the T-bar lift during a ski lesson.
Image credit | Scott Prouse/CTV News
The child was immediately taken to the hospital as the authorities feared for his life.
The little girl was taking skiing lessons. A spokesman said at the moment it would be more of an accident than a mechanical failure, but two investigations are still underway in the town of Val-Saint-Come in Lanaudiere. https://t.co/Q75ZGP5Nzo
— Anais Elboujdaini | o (@AnaisElboujda) January 30, 2023
Unfortunately, he died of his injuries on Sunday evening, the Sûreté du Québec (SQ) said.
The management of the Val Saint-Com mountain has decided to close its slopes for evening skiing.
Investigators of the SQ’s forensic medical expertise service and police officers went to the mountain to inspect the scene and shed light on the causes and conditions of this accident.
Earlier Monday, François Gagnon, president and general manager of the Val Saint-Come ski resort, sent a press release to the media saying “the extended family of Val Saint-Come is in mourning.”
“The extended family of Val Saint-Com is deeply saddened by the tragic accident in the mountains on Sunday. A young female skier unfortunately lost her life while climbing a T-bar type surface lift. Of course, our thoughts are with our family and friends,” the statement said.
Mr. Gagnon says the Val Saint-Come team will cooperate fully with the authorities in the investigation into this tragic death.
T-bar lifts, are they still safe?
The Association of Quebec Ski Resorts (ASSQ) said in an interview with Noovo Info that this tragic accident was an isolated incident. According to ASSQ, the T-shaped ski lifts, which have been in use for “many years”, have had very few accidents in the past.
“We have no echoes of such an event,” said Josée Cusson, ASSQ’s communications and marketing director.
ASSQ also states that monitors receive adequate training to work with young children. There are several organizations that oversee the training of future instructors.
Through their training, ski and snowboard instructors “learn how to get on and off with the kids,” Ms. Cusson added.
In the context of a fall, one must necessarily move away from the ascent line and return to the bottom of the slope to find one’s instructor.
The approach “is really explained to the children and we suggest that all first-timers ask the ski lift attendants to guide them,” Ms Cusson explained.
For now, the safety factor of T-bar lifts is not in doubt, but the ASSQ will “heed the recommendations of the coroner” investigating the incident. All ski resorts in the province must meet the same requirement of the Régie du Bâtiment du Québec regarding ski lifts.
Lots of reactions
The Val Saint-Côme Facebook page has many messages of condolence to the family and loved ones. People also wanted to express their condolences through other social networks. This is especially true of Isabelle Charest, MNA for the Coalition avenir Quebec and Minister responsible for Sport, Recreation and Outdoors in Brome-Missisquoi, and Caroline Proulx, MNA and Minister of Tourism for the CAQ in Berthier.
I add my voice to my colleague’s in offering my deepest condolences to the family and loved ones of this little girl.
All the lights will fall on this terrible tragedy. https://t.co/r1JlJ60UFB
-Isabelle Charest (@IsabelleCharest) January 30, 2023
The entire ski industry @assq_maneige He is horrified by the news of the tragic death of a 6-year-old girl @ValStCome. Our hearts go out to the family of the deceased and our condolences to them all. Rest assured that we also support the station.
-Yves Juneau (@cyberjuno) January 30, 2023