A nine-year-old British girl is in intensive care after crashing through a chalet when she lost control on a black run while skiing in Matrei, Austria.
Doctors say the little girl - who is thought to be from Dorset - only survived because she was wearing a crash helmet.
The youngster is in hospital with bruising on the brain, a fractured skull and damage to her right eye after crashing out of control on the run. She reportedly careered off the piste, through a safety net and into the glass window of a wooden cabin where she came to a halt against the far wall.
A helicopter rushed to the scene and she was taken to hospital.
Her parents and two sisters had seen the awful accident happen on what was believed to be the second day of their week-long holiday.
Dr Wolfgang Kratzer, an emergency doctor with the helicopter said that she would have been traveling at at least 50km/h (31mph). He described her as having 'a really bad impact':
"She crashed through the glass window and then a further five metres into the wall on the opposite side. She was unconscious when we reached her."
Dr Kratzer went on to say that the girl was airlifted to Innsbruck University Hospital where she has since woken from her coma.
"Her condition is improving. There are no signs of brain injury. She was very lucky. She had good equipment. Her ski helmet saved her life."
The police are now investigating the accident.
What an awful thing to happen on a family holiday!
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