Reports: Natasha Richardson Brain Dead After Skiing Accident

Natasha Richardson attends amfAR's 2008 New York Gala at Cipriani, 42nd Street on January 31, 2008 in New York City Natasha Richardson attends amfAR's 2008 New York Gala at Cipriani, 42nd Street on January 31, 2008 in New York City

After suffering a serious head injury from a skiing accident on Monday, several Web sites are reporting that actress Natasha Richardson is brain dead.

Both the New York Post and Time Out New York reported the news, based on conversations which they claim they have had with friends of Natasha’s family.

At first, Time Out New York reported that Natasha was dead. They later withdrew that story, and wrote “brain dead.”

At 2 PM ET, the Web site TMZ wrote: " The hospital tells TMZ Richardson is sedated and suffering from brain swelling — but is not brain dead.” It is not clear which hospital they are referring to.

The skiing accident occurred on Monday at Station Mont Tremblant near Montreal while the 45-year-old Tony-winning star was taking a lesson.

“Natasha Richardson fell in a beginners trail while taking a ski lesson at Station Mont Tremblant,” a rep for the ski resort said in a statement released to Access.

“She was accompanied by an experienced ski instructor who immediately called the ski patrol. She did not show any visible sign of injury but the ski patrol followed strict procedures and brought her back to the bottom of the slope and insisted she should see a doctor,” the statement continued.

“As an additional precautionary measure, the ski instructor as well as the ski patrol accompanied Mrs. Richardson to her hotel. They again recommended she should be seen by a doctor. The ski instructor stayed with her at her hotel. Approximately an hour after the incident Mrs. Richardson was not feeling good. An ambulance was called and Mrs. Richardson was brought to the Centre Hospitalier Laurentien in Ste-Agathe and was later transferred to Hôpital du Sacre-Coeur.”

A rep for the ski resort told People, “She was laughing and joking and she walked to her room on her own” following her fall.

According to the resort rep, Richardson did not hit anyone or anything during the incident.

A rep for the film “Chloe,” which Richardson’s husband, Liam Neeson, has been filming in Toronto, confirmed to Canadian Television that the Irish actor left the set to be with his wife.

“Liam Neeson left the Toronto set immediately to fly to Montreal upon news of his wife’s accident,” the rep said in a statement to CTV. “We do not have any details at this time but we hope for the best and our thoughts and prayers are with Natasha and Liam and their family.”

Neeson and Richardson wed in 1994. The couple has two sons — Richard Antonio, 13, and Daniel Jack, 12.

IrishCentral.com first reported news of Richardson’s accident.

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