A cluster of Covid cases in the Austrian ski resort of Tyrol has been linked to a group of mainly British skiers who had traveled there to train to be instructors.
The local government said 17 people found to be positive were now being tested to see if they had the UK variant of the virus.
“The first light symptoms regarding this were recorded in the majority of the people concerned on January 3. As a result of these and subsequent positive antigen test results, further investigations were initiated after the abnormalities in the PCR test were known. It then turned out that these were people of different origins -- mostly British citizens,” Elmar Rizzoli, head of the CORONA special unit, said.
"They were staying in Tyrol for professional purposes as part of a ski instructor training course," Rizzoli said, while stressing there were no ski lessons and therefore no contact with students.
Rizzoli said the group had been in Austria for a while, with the last individual arriving on December 18. Austria imposed a landing ban for aircraft from the UK on December 22, the Tyrol government press release notes.
While most of Europe's slopes have been largely closed to visitors this winter, the Alps were a hotspot for Covid-19 at the beginning of the pandemic in 2020 when the Austrian ski resort of Ischgl was, for a while, seen as the continent's Covid ground zero.