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Skier dies after being found buried upside down in snow at Mammoth Mountain

Mammoth Mountain.jpg
Posted at 6:47 AM, Jan 31, 2021
and last updated 2021-01-31 10:48:06-05

MAMMOTH LAKES, CA — A skier has died after being found upside down in several feet of snow at Mammoth Mountain ski resort in California.

The man was found by guests of the resort buried head first at about noon on Thursday "in deep snow near the intersection of Redwing and Hully Gully," Mammoth Mountain said in a statement.

The Mammoth Mountain Ski Patrol arrived on the scene, where skiers had already begun digging out the man. The ski patrol started CPR immediately and used a defibrillator as the man did not have a pulse, the resort said.

The man was taken to Mammoth Hospital where he was pronounced dead.

The victim was not identified by authorities, but San Diego ABC affiliate KGTV said he was a 52-year-old from Oceanside, California, about a half hour north of San Diego.

Circumstances into the skier's death are still being investigated, authorities said.

The Sierra Nevada Mountains are getting hammered by a snow storm this week. Mammoth Mountain said it had received 87 inches -- or more than 7 feet -- of snow since Tuesday.

Mammoth Mountain warned of the danger the weather posed to skiers on the same day the victim was found, and specifically alerted skiers to suffocation danger.

"This storm is another reminder about the power of Mother Nature. Conditions are currently dangerous," the resort wrote on Instagram. "It will take considerable time and extreme caution and care by our team to dig out and prepare the mountain to open the next few days.

"Snow Immersion Suffocation (SIS) danger will remain a threat through the weekend – ski and ride with a buddy and keep your buddy in sight at all times," it added.