Europe

2 teens die in April avalanche in western Romania

People walk during snowfall in the downtown of Miercurea Ciuc, Transylvania, Central Romania, Thursday, April 20, 2017. (Nandor Veres/MTI via AP)

People walk during snowfall in the downtown of Miercurea Ciuc, Transylvania, Central Romania, Thursday, April 20, 2017. (Nandor Veres/MTI via AP)  (The Associated Press)

Romanian authorities say two teenagers have died in an avalanche in western Romania after the country was hit by a blast of wintry weather.

Emergency situations chief Raed Arafat told The Associated Press that rescue workers pulled the bodies of two youngsters, aged 13 and 14, out of the snow after the avalanche hit Saturday but three others were not in danger.

He said the group was in the Retezat Mountains, an area popular with hikers 350 kilometers (220 miles) northwest of Bucharest, the capital. He didn't know whether they were hiking or skiing.

He says "they were caught in the avalanche and unfortunately they couldn't be saved."

Arafat said local authorities had warned about a high risk of avalanches, saying it was unsafe even to send a helicopter there.