January 4, 2019 / 3:27 PM / 16 days ago

Four tourists from Sweden, Finland, presumed dead in avalanche in Norway

A military helicopter and rescue workers are seen in Tamokdalen, Norway, January 4, 2019. NTB Scanpix/Terje Bendiksby via REUTERS

OSLO (Reuters) - Four tourists from Finland and Sweden were presumed dead on Friday, two days after they were feared to have been swept away by an avalanche in Norway while skiing, police said.

The avalanche occurred on Wednesday in the northern Norwegian region of Troms in an area popular with skiers. Three Finns and a Swede were skiing in the area and were reported to police as missing.

A helicopter flew over the area where the avalanche occurred on Friday and spotted two transceivers used by skiers to give their positions when caught in an avalanche.

On Thursday, ski tracks had been spotted going into the avalanche but not coming out.

“This confirms our assumption that the missing have been caught in the avalanche. It has now been 38 hours since the avalanche took place,” Troms Police Chief Astrid Elisabeth Nilsen told a news conference.

“Now that we have confirmed their positions, we believe it is no longer probable that any of the four have survived.”

Reporting by Gwladys Fouche; Editing by Richard Balmforth

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