Skiers have returned to the slopes of Crabbe Mountain with heavy hearts after a fatal accident on the ski hill Tuesday.

“The whole community here at Crabbe Mountain is really feeling the loss today,” says ski hill employee Leslie Wilson.

Skiers and staff are mourning the loss of a 62-year-old part-time ski instructor, who died in a collision with another skier.

The incident happened at the bottom of two ski runs at Crabbe Mountain, located 30 kilometres northwest of Fredericton, shortly after 11 a.m. Tuesday.

The man was not instructing at the time and both individuals were wearing helmets.

A 17-year-old girl suffered non-life threatening injuries.

Little is known about what caused the accident at this time.

"We're somewhat baffled by it because the conditions were excellent, the visibility was good, there was no obstruction, so we're really not sure,” says Wilson. “We'll have to wait for the autopsy to see if that can help us figure out things a little bit better."

The RCMP were among the first to respond to the scene. They quickly determined there was no criminal aspect to the incident and have turned the investigation over to Worksafe NB.

Officials will examine equipment, conditions and witness statements in their effort to pinpoint a cause.

"This process takes quite a bit of time, normally several weeks, sometimes even months, for us to gather, analyse and then to come to some conclusion," says Richard Blais of Worksafe NB.

Hill operators say safety was as much of a priority before the crash as it is after.

“I feel very comfortable that everything, the way that the ski patrol responded, the care that was given, it was just an unfortunate, unfortunate incident," says Wilson.

The victim’s name has not been released.

With files from CTV Atlantic's Andy Campbell