Brit sailor died after falling from ski lift during family Alps holiday

Brit sailor died after falling from ski lift during family Alps holiday
Brit sailor died after falling from ski lift during family Alps holiday Credit: Pixabay

Brit sailor died after falling from ski lift during ‘happy’ family Alps holiday.

Tragically, Jeffery Martin who was a world-renowned sailor from Falmouth died after falling a staggering 30ft from a ski lift. He had been skiing in the French Alps, and the inquest heard how his friend had bravely attempted to keep hold of him but that his ski suit “just slipped straight out of my hand”.

Mr Martin died after the accident at the Meribel ski resort in January 2019.  


According to the post-mortem which was carried out in France, Mr Martin sadly had either suffered from a stroke or a cardiac arrest.

Speaking of the shocking death friend Dr Helen Burns, a retired GP told the court: “We were travelling up, and he started to make some very funny noises and the best I can describe it was snuffling sort of sound,”

“We had been talking and suddenly there was this strange noise and I turned to look at Jeff and at that point he went rigid.

“His legs shot forward and sideways so that his skis came off the bar and he went rigid and threw himself back.

“His skis skidded off the footrest and he slid diagonally under the bar. I got my hand to his shoulder and his ski suit just slipped straight out of my hand.”

She added: “I started screaming at the people in the lift station in my very bad French that Jeff had fallen.

“They assured me that they already knew that, and the rescue team were already on their way down.”

Andrew Cox is a Senior coroner in Cornwall and he explained that: “It stands to reason in my mind that if he had that metal strut between his legs, he would not have been able to slip under the metal bar unless the bar had been lifted.

“There is no suggestion of that, so the application of logic is that he must have been to the side of the metal strut.”

The inquest recorded that Mr Martin had died from natural causes.

The coroner added: “It seems to me that it was more likely or not that he was sat between two seats and having suffered that episode … no longer had control of his limbs and he went rigid, his skis slipped off the t-bar and he then has slipped under the bar and fallen 30ft to the ground beneath.”

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Alex Glenn is a reporter for Spain’s largest English-speaking newspaper, Euro Weekly News. Formerly she worked in the NHS for 15 years until relocating to Spain in 2018. She loves the Spanish lifestyle, language and culture and spent several years learning Spanish before moving to Spain for a better quality of life. She has made her home in the mountains in Almeria, where she loves being part of a rural community that has a mix of both expats and Spanish residents. In her spare time, she enjoys hiking, reading and exploring the area where she lives.


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