DISASTERS

One person killed in Squaw Valley avalanche

Skiers and snowboarders enjoy the slopes at Squaw Valley in Olympic Valley, California, December 5, 2015.

Skiers and snowboarders enjoy the slopes at Squaw Valley in Olympic Valley, California, December 5, 2015.  (REUTERS/Max Whittaker)

A Squaw Valley employee was killed during avalanche control activities Tuesday morning.

The victim has been identified as  Joe Zuiches, a 42 year-old resident of Olympic Valley and a member of the Squaw Valley professional ski patrol since 2012.

A Squaw Valley spokesperson said the incident occurred at the top of Gold Coast Ridge at 8:35 a.m. The cause is believed to be the detonation of an explosive charge.

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An investigation is ongoing in cooperation with the Placer County Sheriff’s Office and North Tahoe Fire Department. 

Squaw Valley released a statement saying "The team at Squaw Valley Alpine Meadows is deeply saddened by this tragic event and would like to express our deepest sympathies to the family and friends affected."

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