DENVER — A lawsuit has been filed by the family of a Texas woman who died after being thrown off a chairlift with her two children last year at Ski Granby Ranch.
Kelly Huber, 40, died on Dec. 29, 2016 after being thrown from the Quick Draw Express lift. Her two daughters, then 12 and 9 years old, were injured but survived.
The lawsuit was filed against the resort on Friday in federal court.
The family claims several skiers complained to the resort about the lift bouncing and swaying in the days before Huber was killed.
A final report from state investigators found modifications to a ski lift drive control system and quick speed changes by the lift operator caused Huber and her daughters to be thrown from the chairlift.
Engineers said issues within the chairlift’s electrical drive and control system created a “rare dynamic event.”
“Despite this knowledge of unsafe conditions, the defendant did nothing to immediately shut down the Quick Draw Express, determine what was wrong with the Quick Draw Express, and eliminate the factors that contributed to these unsafe conditions,” according to the lawsuit.
A ski patrol employee who was on the lift saw a quick stop and start, then his chair swayed and bounced, according to the lawsuit.
“[The ski patrol employee] turned around and saw three people falling from Chair No. 58 as it swung horizontally,” according to the lawsuit.
“Schwartz saw Kelly Huber holding [her daughter] in an attempt to protect her young daughter from the impact with the ground.”
Another witness said one of the daughters yelled, “Don’t let her die.”