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Additional Testing on Skidway

Thursday, February 25, 2016

Earlier this week we made a post about our inspection of the Snubber lift towers following the recent accident on an identical lift at Timberline Resort in West Virginia. In the days since, our lift mechanics have also done additional inspections and testing on the Skidway lift, which is of a similar design.  

Snubber is the only lift at Sugarloaf that is identical to the lift involved in the Timberline accident. Both are Borvig triples that were installed in 1985. In 1987, after these lifts were installed, Borvig released a manufacturer's bulletin calling for the installation of U-bolts to reinforce the tower crossarms on this particular model of lift. The recommended U-bolts were installed on Snubber at the time of the bulletin, and our lift mechanics inspected all of these bolts, along with the towers and crossarms on Monday morning to ensure all were up to standard before the lift was opened.  

Of Sugarloaf's other Borvig lifts, Skidway is the only one with a similar design. Skidway's towers are substantially different in design, however, meaning that the added U-bolts were not a requirement for this lift. (see images of both tower designs below).

In order to err on the side of caution, Sugarloaf's lift mechanics conducted non-destructive-testing (NDT) on Skidway's towers on Tuesday afternoon to ensure that there are no structural deficiencies or abnormalities. Though the NDT did not reveal any concerns, lift mechanics will be installing additional U-bolt reinforcements to the towers next week as an added precaution. 

Though these steps are not explicitly required by code or manufacturer recommendations, our Lift Maintenance team felt it prudent to be proactive in this area, given recent events in West Virginia. 

Snubber lift tower. 

Skidway lift tower.