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Two climbers dead following avalanche on Ben Nevis

Two others have been airlifted to hospital after the landslide on the mountain on Tuesday.

Ben Nevis: Three people have died in avalanche.
Ben Nevis: Three people have died in avalanche. PA

Two people have died and two others injured following an avalanche on Ben Nevis.

Emergency services, including a coastguard search and rescue helicopter, were called to the UK's highest mountain at around 11.50am on Tuesday.

A party of four climbers were trapped on the mountain and police have now confirmed that two people have died.

Police originally said three people had been killed in the landslide, but later clarified the death toll.

In a statement, police said: "Police Scotland is currently co-ordinating a mountain rescue response following reports of an avalanche on Ben Nevis this morning.

"Police were informed that the avalanche had occurred in Number 5 Gully area at around 11.50am.

"We can sadly confirm that two people have died and two people have been injured.

'We can sadly confirm that three people have died and one person has been injured'
Police Scotland

"Volunteers from Lochaber and Glencoe mountain rescue teams remain at the scene and were assisted by the Maritime and Coastguard Agency and Scottish Ambulance Service."

The Scottish Ambulance Service were also alerted to the incident shortly after 12.20pm and sent an air ambulance, three ambulances and a trauma team to the peak.

A spokesman said: "We received a call at 12.22pm today to attend an incident in Ben Nevis.

"We dispatched three ambulances, a Helimed resource and our trauma team to the scene."

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon tweeted: "This is absolutely tragic news. My thoughts are very much with the bereaved and injured.

"And my gratitude as always for the work of our emergency services, mountain rescue and coastguard."

https://stv.tv/news/north/1434242-student-dies-after-ben-nevis-plunge-on-new-year-s-day/ | default

Skye, Lochaber and Badenoch MSP Kate Forbes said: "First and foremost my thoughts are with the families of the climbers. This is heartbreaking news.

"I'm sure that the hearts of everybody in the local area go out to those who are grieving. I sincerely hope that there are no further casualties.

"Sincere gratitude, as always, goes to the volunteers in Lochaber and Glencoe Mountain Rescue Teams. They are ready and willing to go out in all weathers whenever the call comes.

"We have fantastic terrain in Lochaber that attracts thousands of climbers and walkers every year, and it is desperately sad when people come to harm."

A report from the Scottish Avalanche Information Service warned the avalanche hazard was high in the area between Monday evening and Tuesday night.

The report said: "As the freezing level rises during the night, there will be a brief period of high instability with avalanches occurring on many steep north, north-east and east aspects above 900m.

"Further fresh unstable windslab will continue to form during Tuesday, greatest accumulations will be on steep north, north-east and east aspects above 900m.

"Other sheltered locations will also be affected. The avalanche hazard will be high."

Earlier this year a woman died after plunging 500ft from the mountain on New Year's Day.

The Bristol University Student was with three others when she fell to her death at Carn Dearg.

Ben Nevis is the highest peak in the UK.
Ben Nevis is the highest peak in the UK.

Ambre Boucher climbed Ben Nevis with friends on Friday and said they were "very lucky" to complete the climb in the conditions.

The group set off from a local youth hostel, taking the mountain track to hike to and from the summit between 9am and 5pm.

"It was cold, heavy winds, snow flurries," the 41-year-old nurse from South Wales said.

"There was a whiteout at the top which got a bit scary, our footprints were being covered, but we managed to find our way down with another climber.

"We saw the risks yesterday. We still went and we were very lucky."

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