TWO of the three people who died after an avalanche in the Scottish Highlands were RAF personnel, the Ministry of Defence (MoD) has confirmed.
The three were airlifted from the Chalamain Gap area of the Cairngorms to Aberdeen Royal Infirmary shortly after 12.30pm yesterday.
A man and a woman died last night and another man died in the early hours of this morning, Northern Constabulary said.
An MoD spokesman said: “MoD can confirm that two RAF personnel were killed following an avalanche in the Cairngorms yesterday.
“Our thoughts and prayers are with the family and friends of those who have lost their lives. Next of kin have been informed.
“We would ask the media to respect the privacy of the families concerned at this difficult time.”
Police, Cairngorm Mountain Rescue Team, search and rescue dogs, RAF Lossiemouth's rescue team and a helicopter were involved in the operation yesterday.
Two parties of six were on the mountain when the avalanche struck, with nine people able to walk off unhurt.
David Rutledge, the training officer for Cairngorm Mountain Rescue team, was involved in controlling the operation from the team’s base.
He said: “We started mobilising within 15 minutes of the call coming through.