Members of the group were first reported lost in the backcountry area of Killington Mountain around 2:30 p.m. local time on Saturday, according to police
Search and rescue crews helped lead 23 people to safety after they got lost in the backcountry of Killington Mountain in Vermont on Saturday
The first 21 individuals were rescued after several members of their group were reported lost around 2:30 p.m. local time
Two more people were rescued from the same area shortly after the first group of individuals returned to safety
Nearly two dozen people were rescued from the backcountry of Killington Mountain in Vermont after getting lost amid "frigid" temperatures.
Seven to nine skiers and snowboarders were first reported lost in the area around 2:30 p.m. local time on Saturday, according to the Killington Police Department. However, an investigation revealed that 21 people were actually lost, including six children.
Police said members of the group got lost after leaving the marked areas at Killington Ski Resort near the Snowshed area of Killington Mountain, according to the Rutland Herald.
Many members of the group reportedly did not know each other, and are believed to have been part of multiple smaller groups before getting lost in the same area.
Twelve members of the Killington Search and Rescue team were activated for the search, according to the KPD’s news release. The team trekked approximately 5 miles to the group before bringing them back to safety.
Shortly after the first 21 individuals were rescued, “an additional call came in for 2 more skiers who were lost in the backcountry,” KPD said.
Six members of the search and rescue team “returned to the woods and made contact with” the victims, who exited the backcountry around 7:30 p.m. local time.
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“A special thanks should be given to all the volunteers who responded and worked this call,” the KPD said in its news release.
Temperatures were in the single digits during the incident, Killington Police Chief Whit Montgomery said, according to the Herald. Such conditions can become “pretty dangerous pretty quickly” for those outside, he added.
“[When] you get in there on fresh snow, it can be deep, it can be up to your waist or higher, with ski boots on or snow boots on,” Montgomery explained. “… You start to sweat, you get wet, the temperatures drop more, hypothermia can set in.”
Those rescued from the mountain will not be billed, per the Herald.
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