Rescuers in northern Pakistan were scrambling Sunday through piles of snow to search for seven missing of a total nine teenage boys who were buried by an avalanche, which killed at least two of them, officials said.
The bodies of two ninth-graders were already retrieved in the Karimabad area of Chitral district, near the Afghan border, and a frantic search for the seven remaining boys was underway ahead of nightfall, local administrator Osama Warriach said.
“There are little hopes to find anybody alive,” said Warriach.
The boys, all aged between 14 and 18, were swept away in the mountainous region when they were returning home from exams on Saturday, Warriach said.
The avalanche was triggered by heavy rains and snowfall on mountains that have hit the country since March 9.
At least 60 people have died due to the collapse of buildings and mudslides, the national disaster authority said.
Rains are expected to ease from Sunday night, metrology department chief Ghulam Rasool said.
Experts said Pakistan would face challenges of changing weather patterns and unseasonal rains as an impact of global warming.
“It will get worse in future,” environmentalist Qamar Zaman Chaudhry said.