Two people were killed and 22 injured in a large fire on Sunday at the Courchevel ski resort in the French Alps, which is popular with Britons including the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge.
The blaze broke out before dawn in a three-storey block used to accommodate young resort workers. It spread to two nearby buildings “extremely rapidly, forcing people to jump out of windows to save their lives,” said Frédéric Loiseau, a local government official.
About 70 firefighters battled the fire for four hours before bringing it under control. Four of the injured were described as being in “serious” condition, and the others have minor injuries.
The identities of the dead are still to be confirmed, Mr Loiseau said. About 60 workers were staying at the hostel, including foreigners. A local resident contacted by telephone said many of them were believed to be Brazilian. Britons are often employed as temporary workers at the resort during the skiing season.
Three of the four seriously injured people were airlifted to hospital by helicopter.
The cause of the blaze is unknown, but Mr Loiseau said: “It can be assumed that the fire started because of negligence.” He said local prosecutors would order a police investigation.