Safety

 

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How to avoid being caught in an avalanche

To avoid being caught in an avalanche, people need to pay attention to issued warnings. When people are in a group on backcountry slopes, one group member should go through dangerous areas at a time. If caught in an avalanche, the victim should try to get to outside the avalanche's path. If unable to avoid the avalanche, the victim should swim up the avalanche.

Safety Gear

There are many instruments that can aid in the rescue of avalanche victims.

Beacons should be worn by individuals in the backcountry. Beacons use GPS to pinpoint the location of the trapped individual.

Compact, lightweight shovels can be carried in a ski pack and can be used to dig others out of an avalanche.

Snow blankets can be used to warm avalanche victims once the victims are found.

A rope can be tied around a person’s body and trail behind them as they go downhill. If caught in an avalanche, the end of the rope will hopefully stay above the snow and the rope can be followed through the snow to the victim.

Airbags can also be used. These devices keep the victim at the snow's surface by making them more buoyant.

This safety gear can be viewed and purchased at: http://www.avalanchetools.com/default.asp.