Video shows the moment the chaos broke out

By Jamie Ducharme
Updated: March 16, 2018
Jesse Kraft / EyeEm/Getty Images

A malfunctioning chairlift plunged a European ski resort into chaos Friday, with skiers tossed from the lift and into the snow.

The chairlift at Georgia's Gudauri Ski Resort, in Eastern Europe's Caucasus Mountain Range, began operating at twice its normal speed due to a damaged ropeway, according to Georgia Today. The lift, which also appeared to be running backward, moved so fast that many of its passengers were thrown to the ground.

Some terrified skiers appeared to jump off the lift themselves, judging by videos of the incident captured by onlookers. Chairlift passengers and bystanders can be heard screaming in the background of the videos. 

Twelve injuries have been reported in connection with the malfunctioning ski lift, Gudauri said in a statement posted to its Facebook page. The statement also says any medical costs incurred from the accident will be reimbursed.

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