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Several skiers injured after fire hydrant burst at Beech Mountain Resort – WSOC TV

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Several skiers injured after fire hydrant burst at Beech Mountain Resort – WSOC TV

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BEECH MOUNTAIN, NC – Several people were injured at Beech Mountain Resort in Avery County when a damaged fire hydrant sprayed a stream of water at skiers climbing above an elevator, prompting several to jump.

Ski resort management said a guest skied in the water and air standpipe on Friday while snowmaking operations were underway. A video circulating on social networks showed skiers on the chairlift hit by water jets.

The resort said in a statement that two people were taken to an area hospital by rescuers from Avery County with what appeared to be non-life threatening injuries. The person who skied in the fire hydrant was not injured.

“As soon as we became aware of the problem, our operations and safety team took action as quickly as possible to safely clear the system and help the remaining skiers disembark at the top of the lift,” said the direction of the station in a press release.

Glenn Counts of Channel 9 spoke to two women who spoke about how terrifying the incident was.

“I have a lot of pain, mainly on the left side of my body,” said Emma Lopinto. “I have bruises from head to toe – some big, some small – like all over my body.”

Lopinto turned 19 on Friday and is studying to be a veterinarian at Clemson University. She said she went to Beech Mountain to celebrate her birthday. She was on the ski lift with her best friend when she said she was hit by the geyser of water that gushed out of a pipe and fell.

“We just grabbed hold and put our heads down and all I remember is the metal bar flying off, then me flying away. I don’t remember anything and I remember opening my eyes with my stomach on the ground, ”said Lopinto.

A video circulating on social media showed that the elevator can be seen stopping and then moving again, with several people being sprayed with water in the 7-degree weather.

Ivy-Elise Ivey and her boyfriend could see what was going on and decided to jump 25 feet from their lift chair, along with several others.

“Everyone was in shock. You’re not going to jump 25 feet if you don’t think you have to, ”Ivey said.

She told Channel 9 that she ended up breaking her arm, fracturing it around her elbow.

“I am in great pain, even with the drugs,” Ivey said. “I can’t dress myself. I can’t shower. I can’t drive. I can’t lift anything, and this hand – my fingers are not working properly.

Ivey said she was disappointed with the way the resort handled the issues and wondered why it took so long to turn off the elevator and shut off the water.

Several skiers injured after fire hydrant burst at Beech Mountain Resort – WSOC TV

 | Local News

Resort officials said resort staff did not ask Ivey to jump.

“After the incident, she was assessed and stabilized by a ski patrol before leaving to see a doctor. As soon as we became aware of the problem, we acted as quickly as possible to shut off the water and help the remaining skiers disembark at the top of the lift. It was a very difficult situation for our guests and our staff. We very much regret that the incident has occurred and we once again apologize to the guests who have been affected, ”resort management said in a statement.

Lopinto is worried not only for herself but also for her friend, who may have suffered from spinal problems.

“She returned to the hospital today for spinal compression on her back,” Lopinto said. “I don’t want to blame anyone. I just want people to know this was a more serious event than what I feel like being told.

Lopinto is one of two patients who were taken to hospital by ambulance. Ivey was taken to hospital by her family.

Several skiers injured after fire hydrant burst at Beech Mountain Resort – WSOC TV

 | Local News

Complex management said their operations and security team worked quickly to unload the elevator and drain the water intake system.

“We believe that everyone is okay outside of the unfortunate situation and that operations are going on a regular schedule,” said Beech Mountain Resort management.

(SEE BELOW: Avery County gears up for snow)


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