A mother and her 7-year-old son died at a California ski resort after a chunk of snow fell from the roof of their condominium and hit them full-force.
The snow chunk, around the size of a trailer, buried the mother and son just steps from the front door of the condo.
Someone staying nearby called 911 after spotting gloves in the snow.
By the time Olga Perkovic, 50, and Aaron Goodstein, 7, were freed from the approximately three feet of snow at Kirkwood Ski Resort, they were close to death.
“It was a freak accident,” Alpine County Undersheriff Spencer Pace said, reported The Daily Mail.
“It was horrible timing, they were right beneath that one piece of roof and it just unloaded,” said Pace, reported the Reno Gazette-Journal. “A few feet one way or another it could have come out differently.”
Kirkwood is in the Sierra Nevada mountain range, near the northern state line.
Perkovic’s mother had reported her missing around 6:40 p.m. local time on Sunday night.
The family of five was staying in the condo and enjoying a vacation.
A search of scanned ski lift tickets indicated that they had been skiing just before heading home and getting hit. They had scanned their tickets last at around 4 p.m.
The pair then skied an alternate route home from the slopes that took them between buildings on a path, Pace said.
It wasn’t until 9 p.m. that a neighbor spotted gloves next to the condo, realized they belonged to someone buried under snow nearby, and called 911.
The mother and son were airlifted to a hospital, they were soon declared dead.
The deaths come after a snowboarder died at China Mountain Resort and another snowboarder who had gone missing was found dead at Squaw Valley Resort, both on Friday.
Avalanches at multiple resorts in the area led to closures and restrictions.
“Kirkwood Mountain Resort, Kirkwood Ski Patrol, and the entire Vail Resorts family extend our deepest sympathy and support to our guest’s family and friends,” said Doug Perini, Kirkwood Vice President and General Manager said in a written statement.