Boy critically ill after ski lift horror

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The Independent Online

A British teenager is in a critical condition tonight after he was left hanging from a chairlift during a school ski trip to the Alps, police said.

The 14-year-old found himself suspended by his own clothing after he failed to free himself from a metal seat yesterday afternoon in the Portes du Soleil.

He was later cut free and resuscitated by a rescue team as holiday-makers looked on in horror from the slopes below.

The youngster, who has not been named, was skiing with classmates in the popular resort of Chatel, when he took the Echo des Montagnes chairlift at about 1pm.

Local police said he was unable to get off his seat and remained on the lift as it went back down the mountain.

Moments later he fell towards the piste.

Emergency crews treated him at the scene before he was airlifted to hospital in Annecy.

Police have now launched an investigation to find out how he became caught.

A spokesman said: "The boy was sitting on the chairlift and he failed to get off at the top.

"For some unknown reason, he was hanging from the seat as it went back down.

"An investigation has now been opened."

The group from the school, which has not been named, had been skiing at an altitude of around 2,000 metres (6,500ft) when the accident happened.

The pistes in that area are not regarded as particularly challenging.