6 dead after snowstorm hits Alpine hikers in Switzerland

May 1 (UPI) — Swiss police say six people have died after a snowstorm left a group of Alpine skiers trapped out in the cold in southwestern Switzerland.

Valais Police said 14 people were trapped in the area of ​Pigne d’Arolla on Sunday following the sudden blast of snow and high winds in the region.

One Italian national died at the scene after a fall. Four other hikers died at the hospital and a 52-year-old Bulgarian national was confirmed dead Tuesday.

Three other hikers are in critical condition in local hospitals. Three French nationals, a German national and an Italian national were slightly injured due to hypothermia.

Efforts to identify the victims are continuing, the regional Valais police said.

The Swiss police said relief resources were “immediately engaged​” to help the hikers.

Seven helicopters from Air-Glaciers, Air-Zermatt and REGA, accompanied by several doctors and lifeguards, were dispatched to the scene. The hikers were transported to various hospitals in Valais.

The Swiss Public Ministry is opening an investigation into the incident.