It was an avalanche of a huge scale,” said Albertville Deputy Prefect Nicolas Martrenchard. The victims, including a 49-year-old instructor, had been walking off piste snowboards in hand. They even were equipped with locator devices. About 40 people had working on the rescue, which involved helicopters and local ski instructors. Two of the victims were pulled alive from the snow but died later. Officials have warned it could take some time to find the buried skiiers, who are all reportedly French nationals. One local worker said to the media: “The Lavachet Wall where it happened is a very dangerous bit of off-piste.” The avalanche risk in the area was evaluated at three on a five-point scale before the accident. Tignes is an adaptive sports-friendly resort including children’s areas. The Alpine ski resort, which is situated near the Italian border, is a popular destination for British holidaymakers. Three people had died in incidents in the French Alps and Pyrenees this year before today’s avalanche.