Canadian Skier Dies at Whitefish Mountain Resort [AUDIO]
A Canadian skier has died in a weekend accident at Whitefish Mountain Resort.
The Flathead County Sheriff's Office identified the man as Thomas Podivinsky, 48, of Calgary, Alberta, Canada.
Public Relations Manager for Whitefish Mountain Resort, Riley Polumbus, said Podivinsky was skiing with several others when he became separated after heading into an area with trees.
"The skier was in a steep-treed area between the Hollywood and Silvertip runs," Polumbus said. "When he didn't show up at their predetermined meeting place, they went to the top of the mountain and into the ski patrol cabin to let them know a skier was missing."
Polumbus said it took the ski patrol several hours to find the missing man.
"According to the ski patrol records, he was last seen by his friends at 1 p.m.," Polumbus said. "They were unable to find him the first couple of tries, and they finally discovered his location at about 2:15 p.m. It appears he fell head-first into a tree well and he was pretty deep inside, so it took quite a while to dig him out. After they freed Podivinsky from the tree well, he was unresponsive. The ski patrol started CPR, and tries an AED, but were unable to revive him."
A tree well is a hole in the snow that forms around the base of a tree.
Podivinsky is the second man to die in a tree well at the resort this season. A 53 year-old California man died on January 11.