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Boy dangling from ski lift in NZ rescued

NZ NewswireNZ Newswire 3/09/2016

A boy dangling off a chairlift at Mt Hutt Ski Area skied off happily after he was rescued.

Ski patrollers were nearby when Jack Clulee, 11, was spotted hanging from a chair on the field's Summit Six lift mid-morning on Saturday.

They quickly pulled free a safety mat protecting a lift tower and he fell onto it.

"The little fella just popped off and went back into the lift queue to go skiing," says James Urquart, the ski area's general manger of operations.

The chair was about 10m from the ground and the boy was hanging under it, being held by his arms by his father and uncle on the chair.

"Our senior patroller, John, was the person who thought on his feet. He just said this is what we are going to do, and he took ownership, and grabbed the tower pad and said everyone grab a corner.

"The kid just popped onto the mat and skied off again," Mr Urquart told NZ Newswire.

Video has emerged of the incident.

Mr Urquart said it was a reminder of what could happen when not lowering down the safety bar on a chair lift.

The Summit Six is the ski area's main lift.

The father, Kevin Clulee, later posted on Facebook: "Jack hanging out at Mt Hutt. He all good."

Members of the family said Jack would have a great story to tell at school on Monday.

Jack tried to sit down too early, and slipped, missing the chair, the Press reports.

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