Snow death toll in Europe reaches 26
THE death toll hit 26 yesterday as parts of Europe remained paralysed by the heaviest snowfalls in 30 years.
Two workers at a ski resort in the French Alps died when the explosive charges used to control avalanches accidentally went off. The incident took place as the pair worked at an altitude of 6,000ft at the Morillon ski resort, which is popular with Britons. Earlier, three German cross-country skiers died following an avalanche in western Austria. The bodies of two men aged 32 and 36 and a third aged 56 were found on Saturday evening. A 28-year-old man is still missing, police said.
The group of four had been near Lech am Arlberg using touring skis, which enable users to climb slopes and explore offpiste. It came after several days of heavy snowfall in which the military has been called in to secure roads and buildings and help evacuate trapped residents.
A state of emergency was in force across parts of Europe last night after the worst snowfall in at least 30 years.
Fatalities have included Briton Jeff Martin, 65, who fell 32ft from a ski lift on Friday after collapsing from a heart attack. Mr Martin, an accomplished sailor from Falmouth in Cornwall, was on holiday in the French ski resort of Meribel.