Rescuers stand near the avalanche site


An avalanche in the Swiss Alps has swept skiers down a mountainside, killing three of them and injuring two others.

The skiers were part of a tour group in the Valais area, in southwestern Switzerland.

All three who died are believed to have been Spanish nationals.

They were near the area of Fiescheralp, and at an altitude of nearly 2,500m (8,000ft), when the snow mass detached.

Skiers from another group, who saw the avalanche, called in emergency services but the search had to be suspended over night because of bad weather.

Heavy snow has been falling for days in the Alps and a series of avalanche warnings have been issued.

On Thursday, police in the area posted an advisory to skiers on their website.

The Spanish group were wearing detection devices in case of an avalanche.

Authorities say the search has now ended and the three bodies were being recovered on Sunday morning.