SANTIAGO, Chile — Chilean searchers on Tuesday found the bodies of two foreign tourists who had been missing since an avalanche swept them away while they were hiking in the country’s south.
The remains of Carl Andreas Fransson of Sweden and Jean Phillipe Auclair of Canada were spotted by a helicopter around noon in bordering Argentina during a joint rescue operation by Chilean police and the armed forces.
Authorities said Fransson and Auclair arrived in the Aysen region of Chile’s Patagonia on Thursday along with two other tourists from Sweden. They had been hiking the 3,600-metre San Lorenzo mountain, and disappeared when a wall of rocks and snow cascaded down Tuesday, dragging them to a stream in Argentine territory.
The two survivors in the group were treated at a local hospital, and police said they provided information to help locate the bodies.
The regional director of Chile’s Emergency Service, Sidi Bravo, said 90 per cent of the people who go missing in the hard-to-reach area are never found. “It was lucky to have found them and to be able to recover them,” Bravo said.
Officials said the bodies would be removed by Argentine authorities and were expected to be examined by the legal medical service in Rio Gallegos, Argentina, before being returned to their homelands.