“Deadliest avalanche of the season” kills several on Easter Sunday

A fifth person has been found dead and one is still missing after an avalanche near Mont Blanc in southeastern France on Sunday, the local prosecutor’s office has said. 

One of the country’s deadliest avalanches in years swept down the Armancette glacier on Sunday in the Alps, killing two mountain guides and engulfing around 15 people.

After the discovery of four victims on Sunday, prosecutor Karline Bouisset said the body of a 39-year-old woman had been found and “a sixth person is still missing”.

One person suffered slight injuries in the avalanche while eight others also swept up were unharmed, the prefecture said.

The avalanche covered an area of 1,600 metres by 500 metres.

Skiing conditions had been “good” on Easter Sunday, the mayor of the town of Contamines-Montjoie, Francois Barbier, told AFP.

“I think it’s the most deadly avalanche this season.”

No avalanche warning had been issued for the region by weather authority Meteo France, but a combination of warmth and wind may have been behind the disaster, according to the prefecture.

“We’re thinking of (the victims) as well as of their families,” President Emmanuel Macron wrote on Twitter.

Two brothers died in an avalanche on the same glacier in 2014, both were experienced climbers in their 20s.


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Monaco Life with AFP. Photo credit: Marc Kargel on Unsplash