Avalanche alert after mountain deaths

Climbers were warned of a high avalanche risk today after three people were killed on a mountain.

Two men from Northern Ireland and a man from Scotland died after they were caught up in the avalanche on Buchaille Etive Mhor, near Glencoe in the Scottish Highlands yesterday, sparking a major rescue operation.

Their ages have yet to be confirmed but next of kin have been informed.

The Sport Scotland website rated the risk of avalanches in Glencoe yesterday as "considerable" - category three, on a scale of one to five.

And the site forecasts the avalanche hazard at Glencoe today will be will be High (Category 4).

There will be snow showers and "accumulations of unstable soft slab will continue to develop in all sheltered locations".

The snowpack, especially on steeper slopes will be "unstable containing several layers of weakly bonded slab where avalanches will occur".

Northern Constabulary is advising climbers that there is a high risk of avalanches in the Highlands over the next couple of days.

Nine people from at least two separate parties were involved in Saturday's incident, Northern Constabulary said.

Two people were taken off the mountain by an RAF rescue helicopter which flew them to Fort William's Belford Hospital.

One was pronounced dead on arrival and the second died later.

The body of the third person was later discovered buried in the snow.

Another person with a shoulder injury was taken off the mountain and received treatment at Belford Hospital.

The five uninjured people were rescued from the mountain.

One man was at Belford Hospital today.

A helicopter from RAF Lossiemouth and a Royal Navy helicopter from HMS Gannet were called in to assist with the incident.

Emergency services worked with members of Glencoe Mountain Rescue Team and used search dogs in blizzard conditions to locate those caught up in the avalanche.

One survivor later spoke about digging his injured friend out of the snow with his bare hands.

Jim Coyne, 50, Lindsayfield, East Kilbride, told the Sunday Mail he and David Barr, 53, of Paisley, were on the mountain when a slab of snow came away from the peak.

Mr Coyne said: "We were just below the summit when it happened. It was a massive avalanche, a huge slab of snow which just came away.

"We were engulfed and I managed to dig my way out.

"As I tried to get my bearings I saw an arm sticking out of the snow. It was Davie. I dug for 10 minutes using just my hands to get him free."

Buchaille Etive Mhor, which reaches 3,352ft in height, is known for its distinctive pyramidal shape.

Suggested Topics
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
ebooksNow available in paperback
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Opilio Recruitment: Full Stack Software Developer

£35k - 45k per year + Benefits: Opilio Recruitment: We are currently recruit...

Opilio Recruitment: Senior Developer

£50k - 60k per year + Benefits: Opilio Recruitment: We have an exciting Seni...

Opilio Recruitment: Senior Front End Developer

£50k - 70k per year + Benefits: Opilio Recruitment: We have an exciting Seni...

Opilio Recruitment: Senior Digital Designer

£50k - 55k per year + Benefits: Opilio Recruitment: An exciting opportunity ...

Day In a Page

Homeless Veterans Christmas Appeal: ‘We give them hope. They come to us when no one else can help’

Christmas Appeal

Meet the charity giving homeless veterans hope – and who they turn to when no one else can help
Should doctors and patients learn to plan humane, happier endings rather than trying to prolong life?

Is it always right to try to prolong life?

Most of us would prefer to die in our own beds, with our families beside us. But, as a GP, Margaret McCartney sees too many end their days in a medicalised battle
Thomas Cook's outgoing boss Harriet Green got by on four hours sleep a night - is that what it takes for women to get to the top?

What does it take for women to get to the top?

Thomas Cook's outgoing boss Harriet Green got by on four hours sleep a night and told women they had to do more if they wanted to get on
Christmas jumper craze: Inside the UK factory behind this year's multicultural must-have

Knitting pretty: British Christmas Jumpers

Simmy Richman visits Jack Masters, the company behind this year's multicultural must-have
French chefs have launched a campaign to end violence in kitchens - should British restaurants follow suit?

French chefs campaign against bullying

A group of top chefs signed a manifesto against violence in kitchens following the sacking of a chef at a Paris restaurant for scalding his kitchen assistant with a white-hot spoon
Radio 4 to broadcast 10-hour War and Peace on New Year's Day as Controller warns of cuts

Just what you need on a New Year hangover...

Radio 4 to broadcast 10-hour adaptation of War and Peace on first day of 2015
Cuba set to stage its first US musical in 50 years

Cuba to stage first US musical in 50 years

Claire Allfree finds out if the new production of Rent will hit the right note in Havana
Christmas 2014: 10 best educational toys

Learn and play: 10 best educational toys

Of course you want them to have fun, but even better if they can learn at the same time
Paul Scholes column: I like Brendan Rodgers as a manager but Liverpool seem to be going backwards not forwards this season

Paul Scholes column

I like Brendan Rodgers as a manager but Liverpool seem to be going backwards not forwards this season
Lewis Moody column: Stuart Lancaster has made all the right calls – now England must deliver

Lewis Moody: Lancaster has made all the right calls – now England must deliver

So what must the red-rose do differently? They have to take the points on offer 
Cameron, Miliband and Clegg join forces for Homeless Veterans campaign

Cameron, Miliband and Clegg join forces for Homeless Veterans campaign

It's in all our interests to look after servicemen and women who fall on hard times, say party leaders
Millionaire Sol Campbell wades into wealthy backlash against Labour's mansion tax

Sol Campbell cries foul at Labour's mansion tax

The former England defender joins Myleene Klass, Griff Rhys Jones and Melvyn Bragg in criticising proposals
Nicolas Sarkozy returns: The ex-President is preparing to fight for the leadership of France's main opposition party – but will he win big enough?

Sarkozy returns

The ex-President is preparing to fight for the leadership of France's main opposition party – but will he win big enough?
Is the criticism of Ed Miliband a coded form of anti-Semitism?

Is the criticism of Miliband anti-Semitic?

Attacks on the Labour leader have coalesced around a sense that he is different, weird, a man apart. But is the criticism more sinister?
Ouija boards are the must-have gift this Christmas, fuelled by a schlock horror film

Ouija boards are the must-have festive gift

Simon Usborne explores the appeal - and mysteries - of a century-old parlour game