Several people 'buried' in avalanche at Swiss ski station

20 Février, 2019, 02:12 | Auteur: Anatole Charbonneau

Almost 250 rescue workers, medical team members, police officers and military personnel backed by eight helicopters and a dozen search dogs were deployed after the avalanche on Plaine Morte, a mountain in the town of Crans-Montana, officials said.

He said Tuesday he heard the loud noise of the avalanche, but didn't see it.

A major avalanche buried skiers on a busy slope of the Swiss resort of Crans-Montana on Tuesday, injuring four people including one whose life is in danger, but there are no known fatalities so far, officials said.

Earlier, the Nouvelliste, a local newspaper, quoted the commune's president Nicolas Feraud as saying 10 to 12 people were believed to be trapped.

Police were not providing estimates of how many people might be trapped under the snow.

However, a large rescue operation continues for possible survivors who may remain buried under the snow.

Tuesday's avalanche was unusual in that it affected a designated ski track, while the vast majority of deadly avalanches in the Alpine nation hit people skiing off-piste.

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Valais prosecutor Catherine Seppey said authorities were investigating what triggered the avalanche, citing weather conditions or skier behavior as possibilities.

'An avalanche occurred in the Plaine-Morte sector, search and rescue teams are on the site.

"The amount of snow is incredible, two metres deep and 300 metres long". The resort was scheduled to host two women's races this weekend.

"About 100 rescue workers are on the site", he said in a telephone interview.

Traffic is higher than normal at ski resorts across Switzerland this week because of mid-term school holidays.

"Our only "enemy" is the sun", he said.

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