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The mayor of France wants Mont Blanc climbers to pay 15,000 euros in rescue and funeral deposits

(CNN) – Anyone wanting to summit Europe’s tallest mountain, Mont Blanc, may soon have to put down a €15,000 (about $15,300) security deposit to cover rescue costs and a possible funeral as planned. The local mayor announced his dismay with his “contempt” of taking risks on climbers.

Jean-Marc Peillex, mayor of Saint-Gervias-les-Bains, a town on the French side, said too many unqualified climbers are risking their lives in the mountains, where the weather is hot and humid. recently made conditions worse.

“The authorities of Saint-Gervais plan to take adaptive measures in light of the irresponsibility of some people and the risks they put rescuers on,” Peillex said in a statement. Twitter.

According to the mayor, the €15,000 deposit corresponds to “average rescue costs (€10,000) and funeral expenses of a single victim (€5,000).”

“It is unacceptable that it is French taxpayers who should bear these costs,” Peillex said, adding that climbers now do so “with deaths in backpacks”.

‘Russian Roulette’

Due to “extremely dangerous” conditions along the Couloir du Goûter – a particularly challenging stretch also known as the Corridor of Death – Peillex said the summit of Mont Blanc would be reached via a popular route known as Voie Royale, or Royal Way, has been strictly recommended against.

He added: “Mount Blanc is made riskier by large rocks and periods of drought and heatwaves.

The mayor alleges about 50 “fake climbers” crossed the route in July for “playing the latest trendy game: Russian roulette!”

His statement said gendarmes in a helicopter used a loudspeaker to turn a group of Romanian hikers back from an attempt to summit Mont Blanc with a loudspeaker on Sunday. 30/7.

On the Italian slopes, the mayor of the ski resort town of Courmayeur, Roberto Rota, described Peillex’s deposit scheme as “surreal.”

In comments confirmed by its press office, Rota told daily Corriere della Sera that “the mountain is not property”.

“We, as administrators, can limit ourselves to reporting conditions of suboptimal routes, but the deposit requirement to climb to the top is the key,” he said. surreal. “The decision to close a road, a route, is taken if there is an objective risk.”

Top image credits: Philippe Desmazes / AFP via Getty Images

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