Girl, 13, dies after Manitoba ski trip crash
A Manitoba youth has died after crashing into a fence post while skiing in La Riviere last week.
Kelsey Brewster, 13, from Thomas Greenway Middle School in Crystal City, was on school ski trip at the Holiday Mountain ski resort on March 5.
"We've never had an accident of this magnitude before. We're all devastated. Our family is reeling. Our staff is reeling,” said Bernice Later, general manager with Holiday Mountain.
Holiday Mountain is located about 145 km southwest of Winnipeg.
Kelsey had been on an expert hill and was travelling at a high rate of speed.
“She did go into a fence. And hit the fence post," said Later.
The teen was airlifted to Children’s Hospital in Winnipeg for treatment, but she had serious injuries and later died on March 9.
A crisis team was brought into the school to help staff and students.
“It's a day to day process for them - very distraught at this time. The staff have the complication of not only having to deal with their own grief, but helping the children process theirs as well,” said Keith Murray, superintendent with the Prairie Spirit School Division.
Kelsey had been assessed as a beginner and shouldn’t have been able to go down the expert slope.
Right now, the school division and resort are unclear how it happened.
Keith Thomas is the risk manager with Manitoba School Boards Association.
He said policies are in place to make ski trips safer, policies that will now be re-examined.
“Before the next ski season comes around, we will have done some research and see is it possible to be better in this area,” said Thomas.
There will be an investigation into the circumstances surrounding Kelsey’s death. Once the investigation is complete, the chief medical examiner will determine if an inquest is warranted.
This follows standard protocol following the death of a child.
A funeral for Kelsey is planned for Saturday in her hometown of Pilot Mound. A trust fund for the family has been set up through Westoba Credit Union.
- with a report from Jon Hendricks