Fatalities in Swiss Alps, Jura decline in 2012

AP News
Posted: Mar 22, 2013 2:20 PM

GENEVA (AP) — The Swiss Alpine Club says the number of deaths in the mountains of the Swiss Alps and the Jura fell by a third in 2012 from the previous year due to often-poor weather that kept people away.

The mountaineering organization said 95 people died. Meanwhile, 2,570 people needed a rescue in those mountains during the same timeframe, about 3 percent less than in 2011.

But among those rescues, the club said in a statement Friday, 878 people were healthy or just slightly injured from activities such as mountain climbing, paragliding and mountain biking.

The most frequent cause of death was falls, including on steep hiking terrain, while avalanches claimed 16 lives.

The club cautioned Alpine enthusiasts to limit their risks and pay careful attention to fast-changing weather.