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2 climbers, guide fall 800m to their deaths from Europe's highest mountain Mont Blanc

Published on Aug 18, 2014 3:28 PM
 
Two climbers and their guide have fallen 800m to their deaths in the Mont Blanc range, the police said on Monday, Aug 18, 2014, the latest in a series of tragedies on Europe's highest mountain. -- PHOTO: AFP

GRENOBLE, France (AFP) - Two climbers and their guide have fallen 800m to their deaths in the Mont Blanc range, the police said on Monday, the latest in a series of tragedies on Europe's highest mountain.

"The fall of 800m gave them no chance," the police said, adding they probably fell off a ridge that climbers must take to return to a nearby refuge hut. "Investigations are ongoing to find out the cause of the fall. It's possible that an overhang of snow gave way under the group, preventing the guide from holding up his clients," the police added.

Helicopter rescue teams discovered the bodies of the three victims on Sunday night near the Aiguille du Midi peak, which rises to a height of 3,842m. Searches had been ongoing since Saturday evening.

The deaths came just days after six climbers fell 250m to their death on another peak, the Aiguille d'Argentiere, and brings to 20 the number of deaths or missing since the beginning of the climbing season.

 
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