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UPDATE: RCMP report no other persons caught in avalanche at Panorama Ski Resort

RCMP said Monday that no other persons have been reported missing or overdue after a group skiers were involved in an avalanche in area known as Jessie’s Monstor near Taynton Bowl, just outside of the controlled ski area boundary Sunday at the Panorama Ski Resort near Invermere.

“The search did not uncover any debris indicating any other persons were involved,” said Staff Sargent Marko Shehovac of the Columbia Valley RCMP Detachment.

“Searchers completed the search at around 6:45 p.m. (Sunday) with a high degree of confidence that no other persons remained buried, after a second group of skiers who were also in the area at the time of the slide were all accounted for.”

Columbia Valley RCMP received the called at approximately 2:30 p.m. Sunday at Panorama Ski Resort.

At the time of the call, at least two people were thought to be involved, with unconfirmed reports that upwards of six skiers may have been buried.

The Columbia Valley RCMP immediately activated local SAR and numerous area resources that included; Invermere Search and Rescue, Golden Search and Rescue, Panorama Fire/rescue, Panorama Resort ski patrol, Toby Creek Adventure guides as well as RK helicopter, RCMP Police Dog and CRDA dog teams. 

Close to 60 rescuers were on scene shortly after the report to conduct an extensive probe line search as no transceiver signals were being received.

The avalanche is believed to have been human triggered and occurred when the adult male skied down first followed by the woman when the slide triggered. 

The adult male was able to ski out of the path while the female was caught up in the slide and received non life threatening injuries.  The woman was transported Sunday afternoon to a local medical facility. 

Both adults involved are local skiers.

Earlier Story:

Rescue teams continue to search for survivors after avalanche hits Panorama ski resort

Two people swept up in an avalanche in southeast B.C. have been pulled out alive and rescue crews continue their search after witnesses reported several others may have been caught up in the slide.

RCMP Cpl. Grant Simpson said a "significant" avalanche occurred Sunday afternoon at an out-of-bounds ski area close to the Panorama ski resort.

Simpson said reports from several witnesses vary on how many people, if any, may have been buried by the snow.

"It's frustrating," Simpson said.

One of the reports came from one of the two people caught up in the slide.

"From what we're getting out of her is that it was just her and her friend, or partner. But there were other witnesses that said they saw five people in the bowl and another witness figured there were 12, but it's hard to say at this point."

"I don't think we've got 12 in there, just because it's an area that's out of bounds."

Simpson said it's difficult to know how to proceed. But they have RCMP members, volunteers, search and rescue crews, the local fire department and three search dogs all taking part in the search.

The avalanche occurred just a few kilometres south of the Panorama Mountain Summit, just outside the boundaries of the ski resort.

—with files from Canadian Press