Man Falls To Death While Rappelling

Man Falls To Death While Rappelling

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SALT LAKE CITY (AP) -- A 33-year-old man who was rappelling with a youth group fell more than 60 feet to his death Saturday when his safety equipment dislodged.

Mike Ashton was harnessed in and wearing a helmet, but when he pushed away from the rock face the anchors to his safety lines came out and he dropped 60-100 feet, said Sgt. Paul Jaroscak of the Salt Lake County Sheriff's Department.

"It was literally a freefall," Jaroscak said.

Ashton, of Taylorsville, was pronounced dead at the scene. He was rappelling at a popular area called Pete's Rock at the Mount Olympus trailhead. The accident happened around 9:30 a.m.

(Copyright 2005 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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