Vienna – An Austrian skier was rescued from an avalanche after having been buried under the snow for about 10 hours in the Tyrolean Mountains, police reported on Monday.
A second skier, a 27-year-old German, was killed in the accident that happened on Sunday when the two men were on a backcountry ski tour in the Gschnitztal valley near Innsbruck.
Mountain rescuers found the 23-year-old Austrian two metres below the snow surface.
“He was responsive when we dug him out.[pro_ad_display_adzone id=”10″]
“The man was extremely lucky because an air bubble in the avalanche allowed him to breathe and because he did not sustain any serious injuries,’’ a police officer said.
Report says many avalanche victims suffocate quickly.
According to a Swiss avalanche researcher, after one hour under the snow, the survival rate drops to 20 per cent.
The two men had skied down a slope around noon when a 400-metre-long and 200-metre-wide sheet of snow became loose and buried them.
The worried father of one of the skiers alerted rescuers, which quickly detected avalanche transceiver signals and located the men in the snow. (dpa/NAN)