A group of unsuspecting ski lift passengers took a wild and terrifying ride when the chairlift malfunctioned. It suddenly reversed, possibly due to an issue with the brake or a fluctuation in the voltage, accelerating the ski lift to twice the normal speed, and flung multiple riders from their chairs, sending them plummeting into the snow below.
[Scroll down for video]
The incident took place in Guduari, Georgia, at a ski resort located on the south side of the Greater Caucasus Mountain Range, according to a report by the Daily Mail.
At least ten people were injured, two of them seriously, including a pregnant Swedish tourist.
Multiple videos of the accident emerged online, showing riders being flung and falling off the ski lift from numerous points along the route.
The lift reached twice the normal speed, tossing people from their chairs as they approached the bottom of the slope.
Iryna Iadak, an eyewitness stated, “The movement of the lift stopped, and a minute later we drove back.”
“The speed increased, it was out of control,” they continued. “The lift could not be stopped.
“People began jumping off from different altitudes, panic began,” Iadak continued. “Many did not manage to jump off and were thrown out from the impact.”
Authorities have launched a criminal investigation regarding the incident and asserted that anyone deemed responsible would be punished.
The riders who were seriously injured, including the pregnant woman, were transported to Tbilisi, the capital, for “special rehabilitation and treatment,” according to Health Minister David Sergeenko.
The precise reason for the accident is still unknown. The ski-lift producer has been contacted regarding the malfunction to see if there is an explanation.
The country of Georgia has become an increasingly popular destination for skiing, with foreign tourist looking to the area based on the regions relatively low prices.