March 15, 2017 / 3:00 PM / 5 months ago

Avalanche in Austria kills three, fourth person missing

VIENNA, March 15 (Reuters) - Three people were killed when their ski touring group was swept away by an avalanche in western Austria, and a fourth person was missing, police in the Tyrol region said on Wednesday.

Rescuers were still hunting for the missing person in the remote area near the Jochgrubenkopf, a roughly 2,450m-high peak.

The group of eight people was using touring skis, with which one can climb and descend, making remote areas accessible.

Their nationalities were not yet known, police said.

"Four of them were able to free themselves (from the snow)," a spokeswoman for Tyrol police said. "After the search operation for the remaining four, three were found dead. The fourth person who remains unaccounted for is being sought."

The avalanche struck around 12:30 p.m. (1130 GMT), she said. (Reporting by Francois Murphy; Editing by Louise Ireland)

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