Avalanche severs road and rail links to Zermatt

An avalanche early Tuesday morning briefly cut off access to the mountain resort town of Zermatt in the canton of Valais.

Avalanche severs road and rail links to Zermatt
Photo: Matterhorn Gotthard Bahn

The snow slide blocked the route between Täsch and the town with its view of the Matterhorn, temporarily trapping tourists and preventing workers who live outside Zermatt from showing up on the job.

Such commuters were certainly the most affected by the avalanche, Thomas Werlen, a safety representative of the Matterhorn Gotthard Bahn (MGB) told the ATS news service.

The number of tourists affected were fewer because most of them would have started ski weeks on the weekend.

However, 50 tourists took advantage of helicopter flights provided by Air Zermatt to access Täsch from Zermatt, a town official said.

The avalanche closed both railway and road links to Zermatt, ATS said, but MGB later announced that train service had resumed.

The Glacier-Express service from Zermatt to Saint Moritz was delayed by an hour because of the avalanche, Swiss Federal Railways said.

Workers removed snow from the tracks and damage was reported to be light.

The road, which is normally restricted because cars are banned from Zermatt, remained closed as a precaution, ATS reported.

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