The 12-year-old boy tragically died at the Tamworth SnowDome in Staffordshire in front of shocked parents and children, despite paramedics’ best efforts to save him
Parents claim their children watched in horror as a 12-year-old boy was killed while sledding down a ski slope at a popular snow sports attraction.
Staffordshire Police are investigating the death of the child in a skiing accident at Tamworth’s SnowDome on Friday.
As health and safety investigators begin a probe, the force has not revealed the exact cause of the incident.
Family members who saw the incident claim the child was skiing when he was struck and killed.
Some claim to have witnessed the child collide on the slope with a skier.
According to a spokesperson, paramedics from West Midlands Ambulance Service rushed to render life-sustaining treatment for the boy but were unable to save him. The boy was declared dead at the scene.
Charlie Christofii-James, her mum, wrote on Facebook that her step-daughter was with the boy when he died.
She also blasted Snow Dome staff, accusing them of effectively “trapping” children on the escalator leading to the slope where the tragedy happened and leaving them to witness the traumatic incident.
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The mum, whom the Mirror has contacted for comment, wrote: “So very sad and shocking. We were there.
“Our children were next to do down and saw it all.
“Snowdome handled this appallingly.
“They trapped my step-daughter and her friends at the top of the escalator to witness CPR on a child.
“They tried to leave and were told to go back up. The staff let me witness the horror.
“We weren’t even told if it was our child when I was shouting down from the viewing balcony.
“Eventually after 20 minutes we’d had enough and went in and got everyone out ourselves. Our children were a mess.
“I’ve never witnessed such a shambles in my life.
“My step-daughter and her friends are still crying now (they were next to go down so saw it all) and it was three hours ago.
“It’s too horrific to describe on here in case any family read.
“Comments of ‘well they would have been dealing with the incident’… that’s not the case as there was lots of stuff just hanging around and trying to pretend nothing serious was going on.
“There were toddlers and children witnessing very close up a horrific scene.
“Our children were asked to leave and were being ignored too. It just shouldn’t have happened. I’m still in shock at it all.
“You don’t believe these kinds of things are so dangerous.
Another parent wrote: “My friend took his kids to the slope and say the boy was sledding when he somehow collided with a skier about halfway down the slope.
“It shouldn’t happen because the staff should be monitoring when people can go down to avoid this very thing.
“It was apparently very busy and full of kids. Police were questioning all the staff who all looked in shock.”
After the tragedy, the SnowDome stated that it would remain closed this weekend.
According to the venue’s statement, a spokesperson said that an investigation had been initiated following an “accident”.
It read: “With our sincere apologies the SnowDome will not be open this weekend. This is due to an accident that is being investigated.
“It is for this reason that the venue is closed. If it is appropriate and possible to provide further information, we will do so.
“We are truly sorry for the disappointment that this may cause.”
Staffordshire Police are asking witnesses to the accident to come forward and have announced that they have referred the matter to the Health and Safety Executive.
According to a police spokesperson, officers were dispatched at 6.40pm Friday to investigate reports of serious injuries at the SnowDome.
“Officers attended the location along with ambulance crews who treated a boy at the scene.
“Unfortunately, the injured boy, who was 12 years old, died soon afterward.
“His parents are being supported by officers. Our thoughts are with them.
“An unidentified man is being treated as well. We ask people to refrain from sharing any footage or speculations about the incident.
The force advised people to not share footage or images of the tragedy via social media.
A spokesperson said: “We would kindly urge people not to speculate about the incident or share any images/footage there may be.”
There are three slopes at the Snow Dome of varying degrees of difficulty.
The main one is 170m and the other 30m. The two other beginner slopes are 30m and 25m respectively.
The Mirror reached out to Staffordshire Police for more information.
Staffordshire Police asks anyone with information to call them at 101 or on social media, ref 665 from 24 September.