RCMP investigating after Sea to Sky Gondola cable snaps


The gondola's general manager Kirby Brown told The Chief that between 4 and 5 a.m. Saturday morning, the overnight security workers heard a loud noise, then found the gondola was de-roped - the cable and several cabins were down on the ground, with several cabins at the top still suspended between the top four or five towers.

The 1.2-mile, 10-minute gondola ride, which gives visitors a view of Howe Sound as it carries them from the ground to the summit almost 3,000 feet above sea level, is a popular tourist attraction.

The company said the incident happened at around 04:30 local time (11:30 GMT), when the line was closed, and no injuries were reported as a result. We will release updates as more details become available. "At this time, it's a crime scene", she added.

Numerous cars fell off of the gondola wires, landing in trees and on rocks in the gondola's path.

"We believe the cables were cut and this was a deliberate act of vandalism", said Squamish RCMP Inspector Kara Triance, according to CBC.

"We recognize the potential of what could have been and are thankful that no one was injured".

The busy attraction was scheduled to open at 9:30 a.m. Saturday, but the company says that it will remain closed for the foreseeable future. "All my couples have chosen the Sea to Sky Gondola because of the incredible views and I would like to find something that can come close to that", Caroline Hyatt said in a Facebook posting. "We are now assessing the damage, which will help us identify the cause of the incident".

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Police have appealed to hikers, climbers and campers in the area who may have been witnesses.

CBC said the damage was estimated at more than C$1m (£634,000).

The popular sightseeing attraction is located in Squamish, British Columbia, about 40 miles north of Vancouver. Nearby trails may have been used to access the cable line, according to the police, who have closed three trails that go under the gondola route.

There is now no estimated timeframe for repairs or when the Sea to Sky Gondola will reopen.

Technical Safety BC and the RCMP are investigating the collapse.

The company's gondola rides take passengers nearly 3,000 feet above sea level to see views of Howe Sound and nearby waterfalls.