A teenage girl has died after falling from a ski lift during a school trip to the Italian Alps, it has been reported.

The 13 year-old girl, named in reports as Poonam Bhattal from Slough, is said to have fallen 16 feet onto the piste in the resort of Claviere on Friday morning.

Although she initially survived the fall, she died while on her way to a hospital 25 miles away in Susa, Sky News said.

The schoolgirl was having a ski lesson with classmates from the Guru Nanak Sikh Academy in Hayes, Middlesex, when she boarded the chairlift around 9.30am.

Local police commissioner Francesco Destro told Sky News: "The ski lift was moving very fast and rising fast when she fell." He said he could not recall a similar accident.

Mr Destro added that the girl initially answered questions when officers rushed to her aid but "did not make it".

Police have launched an investigation and are due to question the teenager's classmates who boarded the lift with her.

The school's principal, Rajinder Singh Sandhu, broke the news of the teenager's death to her family. In a statement, he said the half-term excursion was led by the vice principal of the school with the help of two assistant head teachers and "a massively experienced team of eight staff". He added that the school is "doing everything possible to support the family in any way possible".

A Foreign & Commonwealth Office spokeswoman said: "We can confirm the death of a British National on Friday 22 February in Italy. We are providing consular assistance at this sad time."

Claviere is a ski resort in the province of Turin which crosses the French border.