Australian boy buried by avalanche in St. Anton am Arlberg, Austria

Max Meyer became trapped when a snow shelf collapsed and buried him in front of his parents and brother, according to local reports.

The principal of Sydney's International Grammar School emailed parents and students about Meyer's death.

Max Meyer was part of the mock trials team at the International Grammar School in Sydney.

His family watched on helplessly, unable to save the teenager without emergency supplies or a shovel.

According to the police statement, the family was hit by an avalanche as they waited for rescuers to arrive. "I have also advised our school community that if they need support, they can reach out to our counsellors and to senior staff and me for help".

The department of foreign affairs is providing assistance to the family. The family, a German man and Australian woman and their children, live in Australia.

Six German teenagers were luckier, emerging alive from an avalanche that engulfed them at the Wildkogel resort in Austria's Salzburg province.

Several railway lines in the Alps were closed because of the snow, and schools were closed in parts of Bavaria.

This is the latest of a number of tragic avalanche deaths in Austria after consistently big snowfalls over the past two weeks. He said: "We have seen some significant and disruptive snowfall across parts of Germany and Austria in recent days and we still have red warnings across southeastern parts of Germany and for much of Austria for further snow".

Roads into several places were closed - although Galtuer in western Austria, where a massive avalanche in 1999 killed 31 people, was reachable again on Thursday after being cut off.

On Norway's Arctic Svalbard islands, more than 100 people were evacuated as a precaution because of a storm and the risk of avalanches.

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