Third climber dies after avalanche on Ben Nevis

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Lochaber Mountain Rescue Team has urged climbers to check avalanche information before heading out after three people died after being swept down Ben Nevis on Tuesday.

Two members of the four-strong party, believed to be Swiss and all young men, died at the scene while the third man died later in hospital.

The fourth climber remains in Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Glasgow.

The avalanche occurred in the Number 5 Gully area – the third since Saturday – and police were called shortly after 11.50am on Tuesday.

Police Scotland coordinated the mountain rescue response, with volunteers from Lochaber Mountain Rescue and Glencoe Mountain Rescue teams attending, as well as a group from the Joint Services Mountain Training Centre (JSMTC) who were training in the area.

Support at the scene was also received from the Coastguard and Maritime Agency and Scottish Ambulance Service.

Conditions were very difficult with extremely high winds, snow and thunder and lightning.

In a statement after Tuesday’s tragic events, Lochaber Mountain Rescue Team stated: ‘We would urge climbers to check the SAIS [Scottish Avalanche Information Service] avalanche information before heading out at moment.

‘The high winds and snow are creating high avalanche risk conditions, with natural releases possible on certain aspects.’