Swiss mountain claims two lives

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Sunday, August 10, 2008

The Matterhorn
Image: Marcel Wiesweg.

Two people have been killed while mountain-climbing in Switzerland. The bodies of the man, 53, and woman, 57, were found on the Matterhorn at an altitude of around 13,100 feet (4000m). Their names have not yet been released due to Swiss privacy laws; they were both Americans. Their relatives have been notified.

The two were reported missing by a family member on Friday morning, and their bodies were discovered later that day.

Jean-Marie Bornet of the Valais cantonal police stated that they were climbing and fell to their deaths, and that no guide was taken with them during their attempted ascent to the peak. The weather on the mountain was apparently bad during the time of the climb.

The leader of the rescue mission sent out to find them stated that they were both well-equipped, and that their route was not particularly dangerous in normal weather, but they were caught up in a storm. Fog caused them to lose sight of the other members of their party.