A 17-year-old skier was hospitalized after his dramatic plunge from a chairlift earlier this month at a New Mexico ski resort, but is said to have recovered. Footage of the accident was uploaded Tuesday and shows the youngster hanging for several seconds before falling about 45 feet to the snow.
“Basically, the kid is home and he is fine,” Cody Sheppard, the ski patrol director at Ski Santa Fe, told the Santa Fe New Mexican. “It was kind of a dramatic deal. I guess he was attempting to throw a snowball to the chair in front of him, where some friends were, and when he threw the snowball, the momentum just carried him out of the chair. He did hang on for a while, but then he had to drop.”
Sheppard did not identify the teen but said he was airlifted via helicopter to a local hospital.
The footage was uploaded by a YouTube user named TriipyHD, who stated that among injuries sustained were a “concussion, skull fracture, collapsed lung, and a lacerated liver.”
Sheppard, however, said none of the injuries required surgery.
“They kept him for observation for a couple of days, and then he was released,” the patrol director said. “I’d probably shatter. There is something about being young and flexible, I guess, and just lucky the way you land.”
–Hat tip to Jason Blevins of the Denver Post