Wind knocks gondola off track in New Hampshire
December 17, 2007
On Sunday morning, a gondola derailed at New Hampshire's Loon Mountain due to high winds, causing 75 people to get stuck on the lift for 90 minutes. No one was injured. Winds reached as high as 75 mph near the summit. I guess it's pretty impressive that the lift can withstand one gondola derailing, but I'm a bit surprised they were running the lifts in winds like that. Most modern lifts include several wind monitors and automatically slow or shut down if the wind gusts too high.
Wow!! That's pretty amazing - both the gondola getting knocked off and the wind speed. It really is a testament to the robustness of modern lifts that no one was hurt and the lift could withstand the derailing. I know that at the Snowtime resorts (Liberty, Whitetail and Roundtop) sustained winds in excess of 40mph will shut down the lifts. They were close to that yesterday with gusts peaking at 37mph. Of course, the big problem there was flying chunks of ice off the trees - versus equipment problems. Liberty wisely shut down at 4pm yesterday because of the hazards. Sometimes its smart to err on the side of safety since there is always another day to ski!