Eight high school students have been found unconscious without vital signs, feared dead, after being caught in an avalanche that hit a ski resort in Central Japan on Monday.
More than 60 students were participating in a mountain climbing exercise at the Nasu Onsen ski resort in the Tochigi prefecture, north of Tokyo, when the incident occurred at around 9.20am local time.
School children feared dead after avalanche hits Japanese Nasu Onsen Family Ski Resort https://t.co/YSco4afhIy— Fawzia Suleman (@Fawzia786) March 27, 2017
Rescue officials told local media eight students had been found unconscious but are feared dead, according to The Guardian. Japanese authorities have previously acted cautiously when describing deaths prior to a doctor's confirmation.
Three further students were deemed missing early on Monday along with an an instructor they were with during the exercise.
Japan: 6 students have died. 3 other students and a teacher are missing following avalanche at Nasu Onsen. 3 others have been injured. pic.twitter.com/USYrWktoQt— Rachel Mealey (@rachelmealey) March 27, 2017
The incident came after heavy snowfalls in the region, with 33cm of snow falling between midnight and 9am, according to local Japanese meteorological data.
Huge rescue efforts are currently underway to determine the extent of injuries and damage and to locate the missing students, Fairfax reports.
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