From KCBS newsradio in San Franciso.

04-06-06 1628PDT


"Three Members of Ski Patrol Killed at Mammoth Mountain

MAMMOTH LAKES, Calif. (AP)  -- Three members of a ski patrol on
California's Mammoth Mountain have been killed when they fell into a
cave-like gas vent on the mountainside.

A fourth patrol member survived and was rescued.

The operator of the Mammoth Mountain Ski Area says the four
experienced patrollers were fencing off the vent when the snow around
it collapsed. The patrollers fell 21 feet into the opening.

Other members of the patrol began a rescue operation. Several of them
were also injured, possibly from fumes in the vent. They're being
treated at a hospital.

Local newswoman Bennet Kessler says the vent is well known, but heavy
snow had hidden the regular fence that guards it.

The eleven-thousand-foot peak is in the Eastern Sierra, a volcanically
active region 250 miles north of Los Angeles."

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