Les Houches: Fatal Fall for Ski Lift Employee

 

On 24 August 2020, a routine maintenance operation went very badly for an employee of the LHSG company (a subsidiary of the Compagnie du Mont-Blanc) which operates the Bellevue cable car in Les Houches.

The 62-year-old mechanic fell 35 meters (115 ft) and died instantly.

image: 
On 24 August 2020, a ski lift employee fell 35 m and lost his life, in Les Houches. Photo source@Radio Mont-Blanc

On 24 August 2020, at around 12.30 pm, a 62-year-old ski lift employee was conducting a routine maintenance operation when he fell 35 meters (115 ft) from the Bellevue cable car in Les Houches.

The accident occurred while the victim was trying to identify the source of abnormal noise.

Accompanied by the maintenance manager, he went to the safety gangway of the trolley during an empty passage of the cable car, while being ensured by bodyguards.

During the return trip of the cable car in the Bellevue-Les Houches direction, the mechanic decided to climb down the ladder along the line and then found himself on the roof of a moving cable car but at reduced speed.

When approaching the cable car pylon, the man fell, without being visible to his colleague, who was still on the bridge.

During a third trip, the operations manager identified his body at the foot of the pylon.

The PGHM of Chamonix was alerted immediately. Together with a doctor from Smur (Service Mobile d'Urgence et Réanimation – Mobile Emergency and Resuscitation Service), the gendarmes intervened promptly. However, the doctor could only record the death of the mechanic.

A gendarmerie investigation is underway to determine the exact circumstances of the accident of this man who was nevertheless wearing his safety equipment.

On 25 August 2020, the Bellevue cable car in Les Houches was closed, for the purpose of the investigation. It was discovered the source of the abnormal noise. It came from a key noise due to a resonance effect.

The Bellevue cable car resumed normal service on 26 August 2020.


Sources @Le Dauphine, Radio Mont-Blanc

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