9 climbers feared dead after avalanche on Mount Maudit

Mount Maudit in France. (Wikipedia photo)

An avalanche is thought to have killed at least 9 people — with two still missing — on the slopes of Mount Maudit in the French Alps on Thursday.

The avalanche occurred on the mountain’s north slope, according to this report from CNN.

Mount Maudit, not far from the French adventure town of Chamonix, is one of many glaciated peaks in the Alps and stands 14,649 feet above sea level. The accident occurred just above 13,000 feet.

Nationalities of the fallen climbers include people from Germany, Britain, Spain and Switzerland. It’s not yet known where the missing climbers are from. They were part of a team of 28 people.

The Associated Press is reporting that 12 people were injured.

The AP reports that the avalanche may have been rooted in classic slide conditions: Heavy, late-season snows and high winds. The slide was triggered when a 15-inch thick slab of ice broke loose, eventually forming a wall of snow some 6 feet deep and 160 feet long, authorities say.

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