For the third time in four months, a major European lift has been knocked out of service by fire, this time in the Pyrenees of France. A Doppelmayr six pack called “Le Family” ignited Monday evening at a mid-sized ski resort called La Pierre-Saint-Martin. The station that burned is the return and included a parking facility for all 80 chairs. The mile long lift cost €7 million to build back in 2014. Like many lifts in France, much of the terminal was clad with wood. Due to the intensity of the fire, the haul rope appears to have snapped with chairs on the line. Thankfully, no one was injured as the lift had already closed for the day when the fire started.
Around 40 percent of the ski area is now inaccessible, though the rest of the mountain will remain open. The caused of the fire is still under investigation. Back in September, a fire destroyed two aerial tramways near Chamonix and on December 3rd, a blaze damaged the bottom terminal of a 10 passenger gondola in Zillertal, Austria.
There’s also been another case of lift sabotage. Two wire ropes were cut at passo rolle in the Italian Dolomites