Multivictim searches with the Tracker

We took a short look at the multi-victim search strategy with Gregory, who represents Salewa which imports the avalanche beacon in France. When the Tracker is first switched to search mode it locks onto the strongest signal in its search strip (you may have to cross the search area to pick up a signal if the avalanche zone is large). Using the five direction arrows and distance indicator you can follow the flux line to the first victim.

Click on the [CC] button for English subtitles

To locate other beacons within the search area press the yellow “multi-victim” SP button. This removes the “lock” feature so the beacon will display all signals that are within range and also makes the Tracker focus in a 60 degree arc to the front and rear. Rotate the beacon slowly until you see a second signal, move slowly away and the distance should start to decrease. You should now move the number of “meters” shown on the range in this direction and revert to normal search mode. The beacon should now be close to the second signal and lock onto this new signal.

Remember that multi-victim searches should be the exception rather than the rule. Beacons such as the Pieps DSP, Barryvox Pulse and the yet to reach the shops Ortovox S1 analyze the pulse rates and duty cycles of transmissions in order to distinguish between individual beacons (experienced searchers can do the same by ear with older analogue beacons). This simplifies multi-victim searches but the technique is not infallible as beacons can mask each other giving phantom or missing beacons, a cause of stress for inexperienced rescuers. The Tracker solution is simple and elegant.

The Tracker has been made easier to use in other ways. The auto-revert feature is now disabled by default. This feature turns the beacon back to transmit mode if a button isn’t pressed by the searcher every 5 minutes. It is a useful feature in case of a secondary avalanche but confused inexperienced searchers who suddenly found their beacon wasn’t working or that there was now a mobile victim running around the search area. The feature is still there but must be explicitly enabled when the beacon is switched on. The display LEDs are also brighter and the harness has been improved over earlier models.

Due to very strong North-American sales BCA will reduce the price of the beacon to 260 Euros (you can expect a street price slightly under this figure). They are hoping that this will give them a bigger market share in Europe. They believe that the extensive Power-On Self Test feature as well as the ease of use make the beacon ideal for hire, guiding and club use.

Posted by davidof on Wednesday, 11 April, 2007 at 08:39 PM

Good post.its Interesting to read. Came to know more information.Thank you for sharing this article

Posted by  on  Saturday, 27 September, 2008  at 05:11 PM
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