March 7 (UPI) -- An avalanche struck the French Alps ski resort of Tignes on Tuesday morning while many skiers were on the slopes, police said.
Skis and ski poles littered "Carline," an intermediate-level "family slope" at the Val Claret section of the resort, near the border between France and Italy. It was feared that a large number of skiers were trapped beneath the snow but police said they searched the entire area for two hours and found no victims. A full-scale rescue operation was ordered, but visibility conditions made it difficult for helicopters to fly in.
"Several skiers have been shaken up and taken care of by resort personnel," the resort said in a statement. "Emergency staff were deployed immediately. After the search operations, there are no victims to report."
The avalanche warning level for Tignes was four, on a scale of one to five, on Tuesday. Avalanches typically do not strike maintained and identified ski slopes, the newspaper The Guardian reported.
Four snowboarders died in February when an avalanche struck a nearby slope.