3 foreigners rescued after avalanche hits ski resort in Japan's Nagano prefecture

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Three foreign tourists were rescued after being caught in an avalanche on Sunday at a ski resort in Otari village of Japan's Nagano prefecture, local media reported.

The accident took place at around 2:30 p.m. local time (0530 GMT) in the backcountry area outside the course of Tsugaike Kogen Ski Resort, on a slope eastside of Mount Norikura at an altitude of more than 2,100 meters.

Among the five people involved in the accident, all foreign tourists, two still remained unconscious at the scene, Kyodo News reported, citing prefectural police as saying.

The three rescued slid downhill, one of whom broke his arm and was sent to the hospital, said the report.

According to the Japan Meteorological Agency, there was almost no snow in the northern part of Nagano prefecture during the day, but the depth of snowfall in Otari village reached 103 cm as of 3 p.m. local time, NHK reported.

The weather agency also issued an avalanche warning for Nagano prefecture due to the sudden increase in heavy snowfall after Jan. 24.

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