Footage from Michael Schumacher’s helmet camera shows him going at the speed of “a very good skier” when he hit a rock and fell, investigators say.
Investigators probing Michael Schumacher’s accident said he was 8 metres off-piste when he crashed.
Prosecutor Patrick Quincy said he could not as yet estimate Michael Schumacher’s speed but said it was “not an important element of the investigation”.
Michael Schumacher, 45, suffered a severe head injury in the December 29 accident.
He is currently in a medically induced coma at a clinic in Grenoble where doctors describe his condition as critical but stable.
Fans gathered outside the hospital on January 3rd to mark the racing legend’s 45th birthday.
Speaking at a news conference in the French city of Albertville, the investigating team said they had so far attended the scene of the accident in the resort of Meribel, spoken to witnesses and the medical team.
They have also reconstructed events leading up to the crash, examined the helmet and skis and viewed footage filmed on a camera attached to his helmet, they said.
Patrick Quincy, who is heading the investigation team, refused to be drawn on Michael Schumacher’s speed at the time of the accident saying they needed to go through the two-minutes of footage “image by image”.
But another investigator, Lt Col Benoit Vinneman said the video appeared to show “completely normal behavior by a good skier on this terrain”.
Michael Schumacher had deliberately chosen to go off piste, an area between a red and blue piste that was clearly signposted, the investigators said.
He hit a rock that was 26ft from the piste, and landed 30ft away from the piste, they outlined.
“[Michael Schumacher] is evidently an extremely good skier, but one of his skis hit a rock that was sticking out… it caused him to fall and he hit his head on the rock,” Patrick Quincy said.
Stephane Bozon, one of the local policemen involved in the investigation, said the skis were in “perfect condition” and had not been the cause of the accident.
Patrick Quincy stressed their investigation into Michael Schumacher’s accident was no different to that given to other skiing similar skiing accidents. He said they had investigated 50 such cases.
Michael Schumacher’s family has been by his bedside since the accident, and has appealed for privacy in recent days, asking journalists to leave the clinic where he is being treated.
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