Ski Tourer Killed in Haute-Savoie

The recent fresh snow has not been without consequences. A ski tourer has been killed in the Aravis mountains close to Cluses. The skier was at 2200 meters altitude on a west facing slope between the Pointe du Chateau and the Champ Fleury when a thin, but large slab avalanche swept him into a terrain trap.

The man’s partner gave the alert then recovered the victim using her avalanche transceiver and shovel. Two helicopters arrived on the scene from Chamonix and Annecy but the man was already dead. The man’s friend was in a state of shock following the incident. The accident occured at 13h45. The 31 year old victim was local to area.

The avalanche risk was given as 4 (high) above 2000-2200 meters 3 (considerable) elsewhere. Around 50 to 60cm of fresh snow has fallen since Thursday in the area and this has been accompanied by high winds from the south and north. Around 70cm has fallen in the Mont-Blanc range where a backcountry traveller was caught close to the lac Blanc at Chamonix on a south-east slope at 2000 meters. There was also a large natural avalanche in the Couturier couloir of the Aiguille Verte.

Météo France has warned against the presence of both soft and hard slabs on numerous aspects. With warmer weather on Monday there will be an added risk of wet snow avalanches during the course of the day.

On Saturday in the Chaudefour Valley near le Mont Dore in the Massif-Central a snowboarder triggered an avalanche cutting a slope. He was carried over 150 meters over cliffs but survived the slide without serious injury.

Our colleagues at were involved in a rescue in the Combe de la Jasse yesterday afternoon. A skier with a guided group suffered a suspected fracture to the leg. The rescue helicopter was unable to land in the valley due to low cloud so the guide made a stretcher out of the victim’s skis and the group assisted the unfortunate victim to a suitable landing site. The rescue was complicated by around 60cm of fresh snow that had fallen in the area.

source: Météo France Haute-Savoie Snow and Avalanche Service / [url=][/url] / [url=][/url]

Posted by on Sunday, 10 April, 2005 at 08:06 PM

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