Canadian police suspect Sea to Sky Gondola near Vancouver was sabotaged
Aug 13 2019
Nearly all of the 30 cars on the Sea-to-Sky gondola in Squamish, north of Vancouver, fell to the ground.
Squamish wedding planner Caroline Hyatt said she heard local vendors also pulled together to relocate a wedding that was meant to take place at Sea to Sky just hours after the main gondola cable was cut.
In a statement, the gondola's operators said they learned about the collapse of the cable, technically known as the haul rope, at about 4:30 a.m., when "we received an alert that the haul rope for Sea to Sky Gondola had fallen and the lift was inoperable".
"No guests or staff were on the gondola and no injuries were sustained in the incident".
This is a developing story and will be updated as more information becomes available.
They said that "until such time as a cause has been definitely identified", they are considering the shocking case to be a crime.
According to the CBC, nearly all of the 30 cars attached to the cable fell to the ground.
"We believe the cables were cut and this was a deliberate act of vandalism", said Squamish RCMP Inspector Kara Triance, according to CBC.
The RCMP said in a statement that technical staff and the gondola's manufacturers were inspecting the cable to confirm whether it had been vandalised.
"We are now assessing the damage but our preliminary assessment suggests that a cable was cut".
There have been two inspections to the cars and the two-kilometer long cable, which can carry up to eight people, so far in 2019 and no significant issues were raised.
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.
Police have appealed to hikers, climbers and campers in the area who may have been witnesses. 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.
Reached on Sunday, Squamish Mayor Karen Elliott expressed shock at the incident and support for the work of the RCMP. She said more information would be provided later.
Technical Safety B.C., which oversees all the tramways, gondolas, chairlifts, rope tows and passenger conveyors in B.C., and WorkSafeBC are also investigating.
The gondola, located about 60 kilometres north of Vancouver, has been closed indefinitely.