Two dead and one seriously injured are the toll of an avalanche that swept over a group of seven ski mountaineers in Vallelunga, near Passo Resia, in Alto Adige. The accident occurred at about 2,700 meters above sea level on the Tiergartenspitz peak. The avalanche hit the group of hikers. The overwhelmed ski mountaineers are all from Val Venosta. The victims are a 46-year-old woman from Curon Venosta and a 67-year-old man. A 27-year-old from Sluderno is hospitalized in Bolzano hospital in hypothermia. The victims were recovered under a meter of snow, the resuscitation attempts of the emergency doctor, who arrived on the spot with the Pelikan 3 helicopter rescue, were useless. After the snowfalls of recent days along the border ridge, the avalanche danger in Vallelunga is currently grade 3 of 5 (marked).
THE AVALANCHE IN THE AOSTA VALLEY
Two bodies have been identified in the area of the Chateau des Dames, a mountain in the Valtournenche where the search for the two Turin ski mountaineers who have been missing since Saturday was concentrated. The bodies, buried by about three meters of snow, are in the valley where an avalanche was discovered during the night. Recovery operations are underway: they will then be taken downstream for official recognition. As there are no further missing persons in the area, the rescuers believe it is probable that they are the two from Turin. On the spot the soldiers of the Alpine Rescue of the Cervinia finance police and the technicians of the Aosta Valley Alpine Rescue.
Ski mountaineers missing in the Aosta Valley, two buried bodies identified
It was a spontaneous detachment, therefore not caused by the passage of other people, that caused the avalanche that swept over and killed two ski mountaineers in Valtournenche. Official recognition is still missing, but the rescuers are now convinced that the two victims are Velio Covellio and Gabriele Del Carlo, the two Turinese who have been missing since Saturday in the Chateau des Dames and for whom the search had begun in the evening. The great avalanche – with a development of 800 meters and a front of 500 – detached hundreds of meters higher than the place of discovery (elevation 2,350 meters). Considering the moment of departure of the two ski mountaineers, between 9 and 10, and the eastern exposure of the slope, it is probable that the detachment took place between 11 and 12, while they were in the ascent phase. The investigations were entrusted to the soldiers of the Alpine Rescue of the Cervinia financial police, who conducted the search and recovery operations together with the technicians of the Aosta Valley Alpine Rescue. The bodies of the two ski mountaineers were taken to Cervinia, awaiting the official recognition operations by the family members and the external visit by the coroner.
“It is disconcerting that there are ski mountaineers who disregard the bulletins that indicate danger, exposing rescuers to risks for very costly rescues for the community, unfortunately often only to recover the bodies of those who have been victims of their own imprudence”. Luciano Caveri, regional councilor of Valle d’Aosta to the European affairs, innovation, Pnrr and national policies for the mountains.In addition to the avalanche on the Chateau des Dames, in Valtournenche – where two ski mountaineers were recovered this morning – two other avalanches on Saturday involved three groups of ski mountaineers in Valle d’Aosta, without injured (only a 58-year-old French woman was taken to hospital for tests). “Excursions and off-piste descents require experience and prudence”, read yesterday’s avalanche bulletin. 60 cm above 2,300 meters of altitude – in the border areas with Switzerland and France, including the area of the Chateau des Dames, the avalanche danger was 4-strong above the treeline, 3-considerable below, and for today it is stable.
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