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Third Body Discovered After Avalanche At Nothern Idaho Ski Resort

Kathy Plonka
AP Images
In this Feb. 25, 2013 file photo, a skier takes advantage of the snowy conditions at Silver Mountain in Kellogg, Idaho.

Update at 10 p.m. on Jan. 9:

The death toll has risen in the aftermath of the avalanche that hit the Silver Mountain ski resort in northern Idaho this week.

Searchers today [Thursday] located the body of a third person. That person hasn't yet been publicly identified.

Six people were found in the initial search, two of whom were killed in the avalanche on Tuesday.

Silver Mountain then received a call Wednesday morning from people concerned that a family member who intended to ski on the mountain had failed to return home the day before.

A new search for the missing person was started Wednesday, and the body was discovered Thursday afternoon.

Search and rescue teams from Kootenai and Shoshone counties, as well as a FEMA disaster team, and ski patrol members from other resorts took part in the search.

Original post from Jan. 8:

Officials at a northern Idaho ski resort say they have recovered the body of a second skier who was killed in an avalanche that also injured five skiers.

Silver Mountain Resort spokesman Gus Colburn said all the skiers in the area of the avalanche Tuesday morning are now believed to be accounted for.

The avalanche happened about 11 a.m. on Wardner Peak, an area of the resort where the ski runs are rated at the highest difficultly level. The Shoshone County Sheriff's Office said earlier that it had received reports of up to three separate avalanches on the mountain just south of the city of Kellogg in northern Idaho.

The runs had just been opened for a short period after crews performed avalanche control blasting in the area, using explosives to trigger avalanches in hopes of leaving only the stable snow layers on the runs.

Rescue crews and volunteers searched the avalanche area with dogs and probes. Five people with minor injuries were found during the day, a sixth skier was discovered under about 10 feet (3 meters) of snow and the final skier was found after dark. He was taken to a local hospital and pronounced dead.

The names of the skiers have not been made public.

“Silver Mountain extends our deepest condolences to everyone affected, and out of respect to the families, no further comments will be released at this time,” the resort said on Facebook.

An avalanche warning has been in effect in higher elevations of multiple north Idaho counties, KHQ-TV reported.

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