1 killed during avalanche at Palisades Tahoe during crippling winter storm

The avalanche at Palisades Tahoe ski resort happened following major snowfall for the Tahoe area and during an ongoing winter storm. One person was killed and another was injured in the avalanche, according to the Placer County Sheriff's Office.

LAKE TAHOE, Calif. – One skier was killed at Palisades Tahoe ski resort in California after an avalanche occurred Wednesday morning, about 30 minutes after the resort opened for the day. 

Palisades Tahoe officials said an avalanche happened at about 9:30 a.m. above the GS gully area of KT-22. It was the first day the area for experienced skiers was open for the season.

The Placer County Sheriff's Office said two people were buried during the avalanche, one person was killed, and another person was injured. Two other people were caught in the slide but did not suffer injuries. 

Officials said the victim was a male guest at the ski resort. The injured person was also a guest and suffered non-life-threatening injuries. 

The avalanche field was about 150 feet wide, 450 long and 10 feet deep, according to the Sheriff's Office. 

Officials with the sheriff's office identified the avalanche victim as 66-year-old Kenneth Kidd who is a local resident.

The Sheriff's Office responded along with Olympic Valley Fire and Palisades Tahoe during the search and rescue operation. 

"This is a very sad day for my team and everyone here," Palisades Tahoe CEO Dee Byrne said.


The resort includes two ski areas – Palisades and Alpine Meadows. – that were under separate ownership for years but combined ownership in 2011. The two ski areas are now under Palisades Tahoe, combined by a lift connection. 

A deadly avalanche in 1982 killed seven people at Alpine Meadows ski resort and is considered one of the deadliest snowslides in U.S. history, according to FOX News.

Avalanches on the heels of major winter storm

The avalanche happened as a bomb cyclone brought blizzard-like conditions to the Pacific Coast.

According to the ski resort website, Palisades Tahoe saw 3 inches of snow during the past 24 hours. On Sunday, two resort areas received 13 and 17 inches of snow over 24 hours. 

This week a powerful winter storm brought blizzard conditions across the West Coast following heavy snowfall over the weekend. 

On Wednesday, the Tahoe area was under a considerable risk of avalanche, according to the Sierra Avalanche Center forecast. 

Winter Storm Warnings and Winter Weather Advisories are in place for Northern California and the Sierra Nevada from Wednesday into early Thursday. 

Another major winter storm is set to arrive on the West Coast from Friday into Saturday.