Date
20 October 2017
An avalanche incident in the Bernese Alps last week has claimed the life of a 42-year-old man from Hong Kong. Photo: Internet
An avalanche incident in the Bernese Alps last week has claimed the life of a 42-year-old man from Hong Kong. Photo: Internet

HK adventure seeker dies after avalanche at Swiss mountain

A mountain-climbing enthusiast from Hong Kong died in Switzerland last week after he was struck by rocks and falling snow while attempting to scale a peak in the Bernese Alps.

The victim, a 42-year-old man surnamed Ng, met with the accident on Sept. 21 while on an adventure trip along with three others from Hong Kong, Apple Daily reports.

As the group was trying to climb the Eiger, a 3,967-meter peak near Grindelwald, snow suddenly broke loose from above and came hurtling toward them.

Ng was hit by rocks and died at the scene after suffering severe injuries.

A 61-year-old coach and leader of the group, a person identified as Conway Leung Nim-ho, sustained injuries to his leg, while the other two members of the group largely escaped unhurt.

Leung was sent to a hospital following a rescue mission.

Leung told Apple Daily that all the team members were experienced hikers and that they had decided to tour France and the Alps two weeks ago.

There were five members originally in the group, but one person cut short the trip and returned to Hong Kong early, leaving the group with a strength of four.

The Hongkongers took the Jungfrau Railway on September 21 in order to hike the Eiger in the Bernese Alps. At at the bottom of the Alps, they took a group photograph near a cave, posing in full safety gear, before continuing onwards for a journey up the mountain.

As they were on their way, rocks and snow suddenly fell from above, hitting three of the team members.

Leung broke his right leg after trying to save Ng and was then sent to a local medical facility by rescuers. The deceased’s body has yet to be transported back to Hong Kong.

Leung told reporters that just before the group encountered the incident, military planes had roared past at low altitude. He was leading at the time when he realized there was an avalanche. A rescue helicopter arrived 30 minutes later to take Ng and him away. 

Saying that he was distressed about Ng’s death, the team leader offered apologies and condolences to the deceased’s family.

Hong Kong’s Immigration Department has confirmed that there had been an accident involving Hong Kong citizens on the Alps.

Officials said they are in touch with the Chinese embassy in Switzerland as well as Swiss authorities to make sure that all possible assistance is provided to the accident victim and his family.

The tour was led by Art Vast, a hiking company that was founded by Leung, who has years of experience in hiking and has conquered many mountains in Europe previously.

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