Wednesday, 12 December 2012
Less than a week after the death of a trainee ski instructor in an avalanche in Tignes there has been another serious accident.
At lunchtime today a group of 8 British and French skiers were skiing off-piste in the Vallon de la Sache area. Two of the group were caught in the slide which they had triggered. The slide was approximately 70m wide and slid for around 300m. A pisteur quickly recovered one of the victims after he spotted his hat sticking out of the debris. However, the other victim, a 40 year old British man was not found for more than half an hour. He was found unconscious and evauated by helicopter to Grenoble hospital. His current condition is not known.
The avalanche risk category for the area was 4/5 today. None of those caught by the slide were wearing avalanche transceivers. It is not currently known whether others in the group were equipped.
Comment: To go off-piste without standard safety equipment (shovel, transceiver and probe) is like driving a car without a seatbelt. These do not guarantee your safety, but they massively improve the odds in the event of an accident. If anyone you know will be skiing off piste this winter in Chamonix, Verbier, or the Portes du Soleil, why not buy them a place on an Avalanche Safety Course for Christmas ? More details can be found on our website www.avalancheacademy.com