The horrific chairlift rollback at Gudauri Ski Resort in Georgia a couple of weeks ago was at first believed to be caused by a voltage fluctuation and/or brake issues, but during a press conference held by Minister Dimitry Kumsishvili, the cause was blamed on human error.
The investigation by the French firm Bureau Veritas confirmed that an electrical failure did cause the initial stoppage but human error lead to the rollback:
“After the chairlift was stopped, the operator had to introduce a specific sequence of procedures and after implementation of the certain actions, the operator had to switch the chairlift on to the diesel generator power and bring the tourist to the safe site where they would have left the chairlift.
Unfortunately, according to the current conclusion, the operator made a mistake. The combination of the actions that he should have had carried out were not implemented in compliance with the relevant instructions – it was a human error. “
So the liftie failed to kick on the backup generator which led to the rollback. The official statement from the Minister of Economy and Sustainable Development goes on to say the operator has been suspended and is awaiting potential charges:
“Prior to the completion of the investigation, the authority will be suspended to the operator being on duty when the chairlift accident occurred. Issues related to charging of other liable persons will be detailed after completion of the official investigation.”
Minister Dimitry Kumsishvili made it clear that those injured have already been released from the hospital and have an open invitation to ski the Georgia resort next year for free.