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Alpinist Erhard Loretan dies in climbing accident

Swiss mountaineer Erhard Loretan died in a climbing accident on his 52nd birthday Keystone

Renowned Swiss mountain guide Erhard Loretan has died in a climbing accident on his 52nd birthday.

This content was published on April 29, 2011 - 09:18
swissinfo.ch and agencies

Police said on Friday Loretan died on Thursday afternoon while leading a client up the summit ridge of the Grünhorn in the Bernese Alps.

In 1995 Loretan became only the third mountaineer to have scaled all 14 of the world’s 8,000 metre mountain peaks, a feat which he achieved at the age of 36.

Loretan’s life took a turn when in 2003 he pleaded guilty to negligent manslaughter  for having shaken his seven-month-old son to death.

Police said Loretan and his 38-year-old Swiss client fell at around 3,800 metres up the 4,043 metre Grünhorn peak. They had skied part of the way up the peak before roping up for the final ascent.

Loretan’s client was flown to hospital in a serious condition. Police are still investigating the cause of the accident.

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