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POLICE

Man drowns trying to save dog from river

A man died in the canton of Vaud on Sunday as he jumped into the Arnon river to rescue a dog and was swept away.

Man drowns trying to save dog from river
The man died in the Arnon river near Grandson. Photo: Google Maps

The accident happened late on Sunday afternoon near Grandson, according to a cantonal press release.

The victim, a 57-year-old Japanese national living in the canton of Neuchâtel, was caught up in the current and carried 50 metres downriver.

An eyewitness alerted rescue services at around 3.50pm and two units of the Vaud police hurried to the scene, where they pulled the man unconscious from the water.

An ambulance team and doctor tried to resuscitate the victim, but the man was pronounced dead at the scene.

The man had apparently been walking his dog along the side of the river when he saw another person’s dog in the water. He jumped in and was sucked up by the current.

He was carried over a small drop and drifted unconscious for 50 metres.

The man’s dog is being cared for in an animal shelter. It’s not known what happened to the dog the victim was trying to rescue.

“We met here every Sunday afternoon. He (the victim) loved this spot,” a local resident told the newspaper 20 Minutes.

A similar accident happened at the same spot a year ago, the paper said.

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POLICE

Two mountaineers killed and 9 injured in ice fall in Swiss mountains

A Frenchwoman and a Spaniard were killed and nine other mountaineers were injured on Friday in an ice fall in southwest Switzerland, police said following a rescue attempt involving several helicopters.

Two mountaineers killed and 9 injured in ice fall in Swiss mountains

Police received calls at 6.20 am reporting that mountaineers had been caught up in falling seracs — columns of glacial ice formed by crevasses — on the Grand Combin, a glacial massif near the Italian border in the Wallis region.

Seven helicopters with mountain rescue experts flew to the scene, finding 17 mountaineers split among several groups.

“Two people died at the scene of the accident,” Wallis police said in a statement. They were a 40-year-old Frenchwoman and a 65-year-old man from Spain.

Nine mountaineers were airlifted to hospitals in nearby Sion and in Lausanne. Two of them are seriously injured, police said.

Other mountaineers were evacuated by helicopter.

The regional public prosecutor has opened an investigation “to determine the circumstances of this event”, the police said.

The serac fall happened at an altitude of 3,400 metres in the Plateau de Dejeuner section along the Voie du Gardien ascent route.

The Grand Combin massif has three summits above 4,000 metres, the highest of which is the Combin de Grafeneire at 4,314 metres.

The police issued a note of caution about setting off on such high-altitude expeditions.

“When the zero-degree-Celsius isotherm is around 4,000 metres above sea level, it is better to be extra careful or not attempt the route if in doubt,” Wallis police said.

“The golden rule is to find out beforehand from the mountain guides about the chosen route and its current feasibility.”

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