A snowmobiler in the eastern Alaska mountain range of Alaska triggered an avalanche and was buried in the avalanche debris for about 25 minutes on Sunday.
This is the first full burial that has been reported in North America this season.
“Helped save a guy (Paul) from a avalanche. I thing he was buried for about 25 min. Before he was found. He was blinking when I dug the snow out from around his face. What a great feeling to fined someone alive even if you don’t know him. So glad he was up and moving in a couple min. Never know when shit will go crazy and the world comes down on you. I tell every one to get all the equipment and I forgot one key tool, a probe. Get all the gear and tell all your friends to do the same. Know how to use it ans practice. Shit happens fast and there’s never much time. Everyone be safe out there.” – Ben Anderson, rescuer, via facebook
The buried man was extremely lucky to have survived for so long under snow. The Canadian Medical Journal states that your chances of surviving an avalanche burial drop to 40% after only 12 minutes. After 25 minutes of burial, your chance drop as low as 22%.
Lets all be very careful out there this season. If you head out into the backcountry this year make sure you have all of the following:
- Avalanche education
- Strong backcountry partners
- All necessary avalanche equipment
- A rescue plan
- Knowledge of the local avalanche forecast that day
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