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Kiwi skier killed in avalanche 'triggered by French police'

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Kiwi skier killed in avalanche 'triggered by French police'
File photo: AFP
10:25 CEST+02:00
A skier from New Zealand was killed on the slopes of Mont Blanc on Monday in an avalanche that reports say could have been caused by French mountain police.

The skier was killed on the Mont Blanc range in south eastern France on Monday morning around 11.30am.

He was killed by an avalanche.

French police have opened an investigation to determine what occurred high up in the slopes of the famous mountain, but reports from French media suggest specialist mountain rescue military police may have provoked the avalanche during a training exercise.

Two gendarmes from the specialist High Mountain unit were described as “shocked and shaken” after the incident, and are due to be questioned over what happened.

According to reports in Metronews the gendarmes were training in the area and were swept away when an avalanche was triggered.

They survived unhurt, but later found the body of the New Zealand skier in the deep snow.

“The victim was in the ascent phase, probably on skies,” said Patrice Guigon the prosecutor of Bonneville.

The investigation will be handled by the local gendarmerie in Chambery.

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