A British alpinist is dead following an accident on the Matterhorn in southern Switzerland on Monday. A falling boulder pulled the 24-year-old several hundred meters down the mountain.
His two companions were rescued unharmed by the Zermatt mountain rescue service and Air-Zermatt, according to the local police. The accident happened at around 2:40am at an altitude of approximately 3,380 metres above sea level.
The three British mountaineers were secured with ropes above the Hörnligrat ridge. During their descent, a rock came loose and tore one of the climbers into the depths. He crashed down about 300 metres into the east wall. The man was already dead when rescuers recovered his body. The local attorney general's office has initiated an investigation.
According to the Swiss Alpine Clubexternal link, 3,211 people got into difficulties in the Swiss mountains last year, which was 20% more than in 2017. Of these, 207 died, 135 of whom while doing classic mountain sports.
This year several people have died after being caught in avalanches in the Swiss Alps.