Family sues Vail Resorts over Park City chairlift fall incident in 2020

SUMMIT COUNTY, Utah — In a lawsuit filed against Vail Resorts Inc. earlier this month, plaintiffs Leo Mak and his minor daughter allege negligence after a chairlift incident at Park City Mountain Resort on Mak’s daughter’s 10th birthday, Dec. 16, 2020.

The suit alleges that Mak’s daughter fell approximately 30 feet from the Iron Mountain Express chairlift, and Mak jumped off after he saw her fall. According to the complaint, both father and daughter sustained severe injuries.

The complaint accuses Vail Resorts of multiple failures, including inadequate safety measures and employee training, demanding compensation for medical expenses, pain, suffering and other damages, with a trial by jury requested.

The complaint alleges that at approximately 2:35 p.m., Mak’s daughter and three friends attempted to get on the Iron Mountain lift. The chairlift was manned by one lift operator, who purportedly did not slow the lift down for boarding or assist the friends, resulting in the lift leaving the boarding area before they were safely seated with the bar down.

Mak’s daughter then slipped and was dangling from the chairlift while her friends and her father, who got on the chair behind her, yelled at the operator to stop the lift. The complaint says that the operator did not stop the lift until Mak’s daughter’s chair was approximately 300 yards from the boarding area, where she lost her grip and fell 30 feet to the ground. Upon seeing this, her father jumped from the lift, as well.

A spokesperson for Park City Mountain declined to comment due to ongoing litigation.

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