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Three killed in Canadian ski-helicopter crash

Three people have been killed in a ski-helicopter crash in a remote area of Canada.

The Royal Canadian Mounted Police in west-central British Columbia said seven people were aboard the helicopter, with four others left badly hurt.

The helicopter was carrying a group of skiers on Monday and went down near Terrace, a town of about 12,000 residents in the Skeena region of British Columbia, about 70 miles east of the Alaska border.

Police said the aircraft was one of three helicopters on a backcountry ski trip.

British Columbia premier, David Eby, said in a social media post that news of the crash is "heartbreaking" and people in the province are thinking of the families of those who died, as he thanked the emergency services.

Canadian authorities, including British Columbia's coroners' service, the Transportation Safety Board and WorkSafeBC, are also involved in the investigation into the crash.

Investigators are set to be flown to the remote site to probe the scene today.

The victims have not yet been named, as authorities notify their next of kin.

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The tour operator Northern Escape Heli-Skiing, whose website promotes trips featuring "big mountain, backcountry skiing at its finest", said it was working with authorities to support the investigation into the cause of the incident.

"Helicopter accidents are rare but do pose a risk to people who heli-ski in the mountains and backcountry," a spokesperson for the company said in a statement.

The company "takes every precaution to minimise the risks while being in the backcountry… however, similar to many outdoor activities, it's impossible to eliminate 100% of the risks posed," the spokesperson added.

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