Aug. 6 (UPI) -- Italian authorities evacuated homes and closed roads in the Aosta Valley Thursday amid concerns that portions of the Mont Blanc glacier could break apart.
At least 65 people, most tourists, were evacuated in the hamlet of Val Ferret beneath the Planpincieux Glacier in Grandes Jorasses Park.
Glacier experts from the Safe Mountains Foundation warned that 500,000 cubic meters of ice are in danger of breaking off. Mont Blanc is the highest peak in the Alps at 15,748 feet.A similar threat last fall forced officials to close roads around the glacier. The region has been closely monitored since 2013 because of the speed of the glacier's melting ice.
A couple died in the area two years ago when their vehicle was swept off the road during a heavy storm. That road has remained closed.