'Good Morning Britain's Ed Balls shocks Susanna Reid with revelation he survived an avalanche

Ed Balls
Ed Balls recalled how he escaped from an avalanche as a teen. (PA)

Ed Balls has revealed he was buried in an avalanche when he was a teen and saved three friends' lives.

The former politician recounted his experience on Good Morning Britain while discussing footage filmed by British tourists being hit by an avalanche in Kyrgyzstan.

Balls, 55, told co-host Susanna Reid how he had been trekking with six friends in the Cairngorms National Park in Scotland when he was 18 and he had 'swum' to keep above the snow.

Watch: The avalanche footage that sparked Ed Balls' revelation

Balls said: " It was a big slab avalanche. There were seven of us - three completely buried, four of us only half buried.

Read more: Ed Balls on overcoming stammer: I thought hosting GMB would lead to meltdown

"The key thing you have to do is to swim. Because you have to keep up when you are in the snow.

"The other tip is, if you're fully buried you have to spit on your hand and see which way the saliva goes and dig the other way. Because the worst thing in an avalanche is to get buried, dig in the wrong direction and go away from the air."

Susanna Reid
Susanna Reid was given tips by Ed Balls on how to escape from an avalanche. (ITV)

He went on: "We spent about half an hour finding the guys who got buried, dug them out and carried on...

"They were all fine, but it was pretty destabilising for them because at that point you're blanked out and you don't know where you are."

Balls added: "That moment when it comes towards you is quite quiet. It's not hugely noisy, it's a rumble. And you don't always get loads of powder, it's like a slab coming towards you and you just have to swim."

He confessed to Reid: "I've never ever told anybody about that since I was 18."

Balls lost his seat as a Labour MP in 2015 and took part in Strictly Come Dancing in 2016.

In 2021 was crowned the winner of reality show Celebrity Best Home Cook.

Balls is one of a roast of co-hosts to join Reid presenting GMB since Piers Morgan quit the show in March 2021.

Read more: Susanna Reid admits struggle to lose lockdown weight

She also presents alongside Richard Madeley, Ranvir Singh, Money Saving Expert Martin Lewis, Adil Ray, Richard Bacon, Kate Garraway and temporarily former BBC Breakfast host Bill Turnbull.