Cause of woman’s death on Sundance zipline discovered

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A woman who died riding a zip line at Sundance Mountain Resort hit a tree, authorities say. 

South Carolina resident Lisa Lambe, 55, was found unresponsive on the zip line with severe internal injuries on May 20. She died May 21 at Utah Valley Hospital in Provo.

Investigators were unsure what could have caused the injuries, and Lambe was taken to the Utah State Medical Examiner’s Office for an autopsy.

“Investigators located a tree in close proximity to the zip line that was broken near the top,” the Utah County Sheriff’s Office said in a statement. “Investigators recovered evidence from the tree that shows Lambe came into contact with it, which was consistent with her injuries at the scene. Investigators believe that high winds caused the tree to break and fall into Lambe’s path in this unfortunate accident.”

Sundance's Ziptour soars over the breathtaking views of the Rocky Mountains. This one of a kind zip line expects to bring visitors from around the country. (Czar Johnson)
Sundance’s Ziptour soars over the breathtaking views of the Rocky Mountains. This one-of-a-kind zip line is expected to bring visitors from around the country. (Czar Johnson)

It was ultimately determined Lambe died of blunt force trauma and Sergeant Spencer Cannon of the Utah County Sheriff’s Office remarked it was pretty obvious, even at the scene, that she had suffered some pretty significant trauma. There is no evidence of criminal wrongdoing in the case.

“She and her husband had been coming down the zip line. The husband got down to the bottom,” Sergeant Spencer Cannon said. “She didn’t arrive at the same time as he did, didn’t arrive at all, and they went back up and found his wife and she was unconscious and she wasn’t breathing.”

Sundance closed the zip line to investigate and inspect it for safety issues on the day of the accident and declared it safe soon after. The zip line then reopened the next day.

“Sundance goes to great lengths to operate our ZipTour excursion with safety as the top priority,” Sundance Mountain Resort said in a press release. “This includes daily, monthly, seasonal and annual inspections of all lines, foundations and equipment. Both local authorities and the zip line manufacturer have inspected the Sundance ZipTour and have cleared all spans for full operation.”

The press release continued to express condolences for Lambe’s death.

“All of us here at Sundance Mountain Resort are deeply saddened by Mrs. Lambe’s passing,” Sundance Mountain Resort said in the press release. “Our thoughts and prayers continue to be with the family of Mrs. Lambe. We are working very closely with local authorities in the pending investigation.”

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