AP NEWS

Teens crash while sledding on closed ski slope, killing 1

January 17, 2018

NEWRY, Maine (AP) — A teenage stunt in which two high school students sneaked onto a ski mountain for some illicit, late-night tubing ended in tragedy when the pair crashed into a tree, killing of one and seriously injuring the other, officials said Wednesday.

The Sunday River ski mountain was closed and off limits when the crash was reported at 2 a.m. Wednesday by a third person who was not on the inflatable tube, Oxford County Chief Deputy Hart Daley said.

Portsmouth High School Principal Mary Lyons confirmed that a senior, 18-year-old David Kohlhase, died in the crash and that another student was hospitalized. The others weren’t identified.

The crash happened on the Tempest Trail, part of which is rated for expert skiers and part of which is rated for intermediate skiers, said Sunday River spokeswoman Darcy Lambert.

The trail is steeper than most sledding hills.

The teenage trio is presumed to have hiked up from a condominium long after the resort closed and the chairlifts stopped running, Lambert said. Sledding is never allowed on ski trails, and only mechanized grooming equipment is allowed on trails so late at night.

Lyons described Kohlhase as “a beloved member of our school community,” and said a crisis team would be available Thursday when students returned from a snow day.

Daley said an investigation was continuing.

When asked whether alcohol was a factor, he said: “It could be weeks before we receive lab results, but when we do, that information will be released.”

AP RADIO
Update hourly