Alberta Alpine Ski Association mourns death of 9-year-old skier

STARS air ambulance. File / Global News

The Alberta Alpine Ski Association said its members are stunned by the death of a nine-year-old skier who was fatally injured at the Nakiska Ski Resort Sunday afternoon.

The association said the young athlete was a member of the Mt. Allen ski team. She was skiing with her group on “Homesteader” when she appeared to have lost control and hit a tree.

“It was with shock and great sadness that we learned of the athlete’s passing at Children’s Hospital on Sunday afternoon,” the association said in a statement. President Nigel Loring said Tuesday grief counselling was available for staff and club members.

“Sadly, our sport is not without some inherent dangers,” the statement said. “Everyday the staff and volunteers at Alberta Alpine work with our member ski clubs and teams to reduce risk and increase participant safety. We follow the highest standards and share best practices from governing bodies throughout the world. Every single day we work to ensure our children are participating in the safest possible manner.

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“Alberta Alpine will work with our member clubs to learn from this tragic accident. All learnings will be shared, not only within our member teams, but also throughout Canada.”

EMS were called to Nakiska at about 1 p.m. Sunday afternoon, where the young girl was found unconscious and unresponsive on the hill. EMS said they initiated CPR before bringing her to their medical facility down the hill.

STARS air ambulance and Kananaskis paramedics treated the young girl before flying her to the Alberta Children’s Hospital in critical condition. She later died in hospital, according to Alberta Alpine.

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