Several skiers were left buried under an avalanche in Switzerland, police have confirmed.

The incident happened at 2.15pm local time on Plaine Morte in the Crans Montana resort.

Reports say up to 12 people could have been trapped in the snow.

Skiers could be seen around the area of snow which had become displaced and go down the mountain, in an area which has seen temperatures rise in recent weeks.

Police say rescue teams have already safely extricated people from the snow but are still searching for more.

The emergency services have set up a helpline for families.