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Published on Friday, January 11, 2019

Avalanche crashes into hotel in Switzerland



A 300-metre-wide avalanche has crashed into a hotel in Switzerland, burying 25 vehicles and smashing a restaurant window.





A guest at the Santis Hotel, in Schwaegalp in the north-eastern part of the country, told the Tagblatt newspaper he had looked outside and saw snow swirling all around. He initially thought a load of snow had fallen off the roof.


"Then there was a massive noise and a load of snow came in the back of the restaurant," he said.


Some hotel guests received minor injuries and were taken to hospital, but no-one was reported missing or seriously injured.


The region has witnessed heavy snowfall in recent days, with 50-90 centimetres of fresh snow falling in the past 72 hours, according to SRF Meteo.


Over the past few days, one metre of fresh snow has fallen in the Säntis region.


Access to Santis Hotel and the avalanche area remains closed to all traffic.


Heavy snow across Europe has grounded flights and forced schools and resorts to close. The freezing weather looks set to continue into the weekend.


At least 17 people have died in weather-related incidents across the continent this week.

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