Wednesday, 14 December 2011
A 39 year man from Briancon was completely buried for 20 minutes by an avalanche at the weekend. He was ski touring above the resort of Puy St Vincent in the Ecrins National Park when the avalanche buried him under 1m of snow. The avalanche occurred at 2600 meters in the vallon de Narreyroux. He and his ski partner were descending from the col des Queyrettes. His partner was below the slide and had to climb back up the slope to start the search which delayed the rescue.
The victim was found unconscious thanks to his avalanche beacon. Rescue was delayed due to lack of phone signal, but fortunately the man's companion was able to carry out the rescue and subsequently raise the alarmm. The victim was subsequently airlifted to hospital in Brian? suffering from hypothermia and minor injuries. The slab was described as small but sufficient to bury the victim under 1 meter of snow. There have been a number of avalanches, both natural and skier triggered, in the area over the last few days following light snow accompanied by high winds.
Officials are urging caution in the mountains due to the massive amounts of snow that are forecast for the coming week. Original story courtesy of http://www.pistehors.com.