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Swiss mountain deaths spike tied to hot weather

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Swiss mountain deaths spike tied to hot weather
Photo: Switzerland Tourism
18:48 CET+01:00
A hot summer is being blamed for a rise in deadly mountain accidents in Switzerland this year compared to 2014, the Swiss Alpine Club says.

A total of 150 people died in the Swiss mountains in the first nine months of the year, the club said in a report issued this week.

That's up from 106 in the same period a year earlier, according to provisional figures issued by the alpine group.

A total of 2,400 accidents were recorded, 330 more than in the same time-frame in 2014.

“In comparison with the previous year, the high numbers for 2015 can be explained largely by a beautiful, hot summer, inciting people to go in for outdoor activities,” Ueli Mosimann, in charge of mountain sport safety for the club said, according to a report from the ATS news agency.

Accidents Hiking in the Alps and Jura mountains were responsible alone for 965 emergencies and 59 deaths.

“Surveys have shown that many people don't know the warnings signs,” Mosimann told ATS.

“The most important thing is to prepare your hike ahead of time at your home,” he said.

Mosimann noted that hikers often start relatively late in the day, which increases the likelihood of difficulties, such as late-afternoon storms, rock slides and heat, while not allowing extra time to deal with complications.

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