Interview with Brogan Royles, who is the Food and Beverage Assistant Manager at the Sea to Sky Gondola. She explains how the Vandalism has effected her and the rest of the team.
Sea to Sky Gondola vandalized for the second time
The Sea to Sky Gondola, located in Squamish, British Columbia has faced it’s second act of vandalism in two years. On the evening of September 14th, 2020, an individual climbed one of the Gondola’s towers, partially cutting through the haul rope, causing it to eventually snap. This is a repeat of the same act of vandalism that had occurred one year prior, on August 10th, 2019.
The Sea to Sky Gondola is a tourist destination that offers amazing views of Howe Sound, beautiful hikes, and good food to enjoy with the entire family. The company prides themselves on their accessibility and are currently taking the necessary steps to become a greener facility for the community. Unfortunately, this is not the first time the company has been targeted in an act of vandalism.
On the evening of August 10th, 2019, the first attack was made against the Gondola. An individual climbed one of the Gondola’s towers at approximately 4am, and proceeded to cut the line that carried the 30 gondola cabins. Nearly all of the cabins came crashing down, leaving many people jobless, and the company with a lot of questions. Many believed the incident to be a safety failure by the company, but Technical Safety BC were quick to release a statement for the Sea to Sky Gondola and announce that it was, in fact, cut deliberately. An RCMP investigation began instantly, but they did not identify any individual that could have been responsible for the incident. After a long six months of rebuilding, the company reopened on the 14th of February, 2020. Despite a global pandemic, the company had a successful and busy summer. The high spirits did not end up lasting very long.
New and improved security measures were put in place, but despite this fact, on September 14th, 2020, the company was vandalized again. With the shield of smoke billowing in from the California wildfires, the vandal had an advantage to disguise their identity from the security cameras. The scene was virtually identical to that of the previous year.
It didn’t take long after vandalism number two for the RCMP to take over the investigation once again. This time, it was evident that the RCMP and the Gondola were determined to find who had done this once and for all. A few short weeks after the vandalism occurred, the RCMP and the Sea to Sky Gondola’s General Manager, Kirby Brown, held a press conference to offer a reward of $250,000 for anyone who had any serious information that would lead to an arrest on who may have done this. Many theories are being passed around the town of Squamish on who the vandal is, but so far, if anyone has any information, no one has come forward to help the company feel at ease about this individual still being on the loose.
The whole team at the Sea to Sky Gondola have remained in good spirits despite the hardships they have faced in the past year and are planning on reopening in late Spring/early Summer 2021 once they have their new haul rope and new gondola cabins.