British skier, 50, dies 'after falling several metres' off-piste in French alps

A British man has died after falling ‘several dozen metres’ while skiing off-piste in the French Alps.

The man, 50, suffered serious injuries including multiple fractures in the heavy fall on Sunday, ski operator Meribel Alpina said.

Mountain rescuers and a helicopter reached the area within 15 minutes, but the man had gone into cardiac arrest and was pronounced dead at the scene.

Witnesses described seeing him ‘taking off’ into the air at a ‘very high speed’ before landing on a slope covered in rocks.

French Police has launched an investigation into the death which is thought to have been caused by the speed in which the skier was travelling.

The accident took place in the Saulire sector of Meribel, where the world skiing championship is currently underway until 19 February.

A British woman, who was reported to be 45-years-old, last month was killed in an avalanche while walking in the French Alps.

She was airlifted off Mont Blanc’s Argentiere Glacier by mountain rescuers but later died of her injuries.

‘When we arrived we had to rescue this person but she was in a bad situation and we evacuated her from the valley,’ Colonel Bertrand Host, of the mountain rescue gendarmerie in Chamonix, said.

‘She was taken charge by rescuers and two dogs but we didn’t manage to reanimate her.’

The French National Mountain Safety Observation System (SNOSM) recorded a total of 12 deaths in the Alps during the 2021-22 ski season.

Emergency services attended around 50,000 incidents, while more than 45,000 people were treated for injuries.

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