Four skiers dead, four rescued after avalanche in upstate Utah

The Salt Lake City Unified Police Department received a call to hang up at around 11:40 a.m. Saturday, and then received a report that there had been an avalanche in the Wilson Basin area that had trapped five people, according to Sgt. Melody Cutler, a police intelligence officer.

Two groups of skiers, one group of three and another of five, started skiing on the mountain at the same time, and authorities believe the avalanche was caused by group skiing, Cutler said.

“Four of those skiers managed to dig their way out,” Cutler said. “All four remaining have died.”

The ages of the skiers ranged from their early 20s to late 30. A Life Flight ambulance was called to evacuate the survivors from the area and a transfer was conducted to determine if it was safe for rescuers to pass the deceased, according to Cutler to remove tonight, Cutler said.

The location where the avalanche occurred is a “very popular backcountry ski area,” Cutler told CNN, adding that it has “been under very high-risk avalanche conditions recently.”

The Wilson Basin is located in Millcreek Canyon, about 20 miles southeast of Salt Lake City.

The Utah Avalanche Center said in a tweet Saturday morning that there were “dangerous avalanche conditions”.

Utah Governor Spencer Cox responded to the death on Twitter on Saturday, calling it a “terrible tragedy”.

“We are grateful to first responders and others who have been involved in this rescue and recovery effort.” Said Cox. “Since the danger of avalanches is high, please be extremely careful.”
Jenny Wilson, Salt Lake County Mayor tweeted that she was “heartbroken”.

“We deeply mourn the loss of life as a result of this devastating incident,” said Wilson.

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The four are the latest in a series of avalanche deaths in three states, bringing the death toll to nine.

ON Utah man was killed When he was caught in an avalanche near the Resort Resort Park City Mountains Canyons Village a week ago, just a few miles from the location of the avalanche on Saturday. The Utah Avalanche Center has has already published a report Analysis of the avalanche.
Three other skiers who were all local officials were there killed in an avalanche in Colorado Monday. Their bodies were recovered on Wednesday.
In New Hampshire, A skier’s body was recovered Wednesday after an avalanche in the White Mountain National Forest.

In an earlier version of this story, Jenny Wilson’s title was incorrectly stated. She is the mayor of Salt Lake County.

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