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Four dead and one missing after avalanche in Austria’s Tyrol

Four people were killed in an avalanche in the Austrian province of Tyrol, the emergency forces said on Friday.

Vienna, 4 February 2022 (dpa/MIA) — Four people were killed in an avalanche in the Austrian province of Tyrol, the emergency forces said on Friday.

One injured person was flown to Switzerland, a police spokesperson told dpa.

The accident occurred around the Spiss municipality, on the border with Switzerland.

Search operations in the masses of snow were still under way in the afternoon. The spokesperson did not give any information on the number of missing persons or the origin of the victims.

It was one of the most serious avalanche accidents seen in Austria this winter season. At the beginning of December, three hiking skiers were killed and two others were injured by masses of snow in the Salzburg province.

According to the Austrian avalanche warning system, there is considerable danger in many areas of the mountains, rated third in a five-level risk scale.

In Tyrol alone, 13 slab avalanches had occurred by Friday afternoon. In the popular ski resort in Sölden, an avalanche buried five winter sports enthusiasts on a secured slope. They were rescued alive.

In the Tyrolean ski resort of Glungezer, a German woman was also rescued alive after she was buried for 15 minutes under 1.5 meters of snow. She was unconscious, but was still able to breathe, according to the police.

“In any case, surviving for 15 minutes is a total stroke of luck,” the police spokesperson said. The woman, who lives in Innsbruck, was flown to a hospital with injuries.

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