British man, 61, dies in avalanche in the French Alps while on ski tour
1st March 2019

A British tourist has died in an avalanche in the French Alps .

The 61-year-old was skiing in a group with two guides today near Alpe D’Huez, a popular resort in France.

But a huge slab of snow broke off the mountain 100 metres above the group and smashed into the victim and pals.

The man, from Jersey, died at the scene while one of his friends and a guide were treated in hospital for injuries.

The avalanche risk in the area had been classed as “low" – one on a scale of one-to-five.

Raphaël Balland, public prosecutor who has opened an investigation into the tragedy, said: "The avalanche occurred at 2000 meters altitude, in the town of Monêtier-les-Bains, on a usual ski touring route leading to Roche Bernard Ridge."

The tragedy happened in a partially wooded area. 

The group consisted of the man and six friends.

Ski touring is typically done off-piste.

The skis’ bindings, which allow the ski tourer to free their heels, and special skins on the underside of the skis enable the ski tourer to hike up a mountain.

It’s the latest in a string of Brits to have died in avalanches across the Alps after heavy snowfall this season.

One young Brit died after a similar disaster in Courmayeur, Valle d’Aosta in Italy, in early February .

And in Meribel, France, a Brit plunged from a chairlift in a horrific tragedy.

The 65-year-old man tumbled 32 feet to his death in January.

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