50KalThree ways I see loading a lift with a seat not put down.
1. Early morning miss. Between top and bottom someone did not put the chair down. Probably when a operator was trying to shovel and flip chairs at the same time. Or answering the phone. Or smoking a dart.
2. Wind flipped it. Depending on the model of lift and if the conditions of weather, the chair could of gotten flipped and stayed up. Some lifts will have locks on the the seats that keep it down or up.
3. End of day early flip. Sometimes a lifty will start flipping chairs early so to close down faster for whatever reason (slow day, storm coming in, Superbowl, pool party). Its critical that the person at the top and bottom communicate so they don't accidentally load a person. I actually saw a European couple get off a lift at the top with the chair flipped up. It was a newer lift and had a thick support bar but if they were not super chill it would of turned into a serious lawsuit.
All three reason though are not enough to hid a fact that a semi decent lifty should of prevented it.
I've heard Vail has been driving the lead struggle bus when it come retaining anyone for a full season in the lower paid employees tier.
Maybe that was contributing factor. A lack of personal at lift stations. A single lifty running a multiple passenger load station is bound to have an accident if the whole season goes that way.
Last season there were lifts not spinning simply because they didn't have the people. And some of the lifts that were spinning they had people from other delartments working a 6th day. Some of them making a decent amount mire than lifty wage and OT.
And Vail can suck a dick. Their employee retention is terrible. But if you're going to pay shitty and fuck up the hours constantly even when you do pay, fuck that. The corporate bullshit is okay if the pay is decent. Low pay is okay at a small mountain with chill vibes.
Idk the corporate bullshit cluster fuck of organisations. People that end up in management roles with no experience in departments but insitst on coming up with ideas to "fix" things. Even if said ideas are trash the fact that they came up with them = being good.
I'm never working for Vail again. Watching that company degrade and not get their shit together has been fucked. A lot if people that hate Vail have terrible reasons, but there are plenty of good reasons to hate them.