Posted on: 2023-03-19 16:45:18 by davidof

Fatal avalanche on the Grand Bec

A group of three skier tourers from Annecy have been caught by a large avalanche on the Grand Bec (3399 meters) in the Champagny-en-Vanoise sector on Saturday afternoon. A man in his 30s was killed by the slide, one of his companions suffered severe back injuries. The alert was given by the third skier. They were on the normal ski touring route to the Grand Bec in the Creux de Nantets sector on a NW slope at around 2600 meters when they were caught by the slide. The victim was buried under a meter of snow.

The avalanche risk was Considerable (⅗) above 2200 meters, Medium below. The bulletin warned of a persistent weak layer in the sector and warned of the possibility of large, skier triggered slabs on a wide E->N-W sector above 2200 meters (limit of recent rainfall) formed by the recent snowfall and wind. A number of large avalanches had been triggered over the preceding days.

Around 11am on Saturday a group of three ski tourers were caught by an avalanche on the Col de Laurichard near to the Col du Lauteret n the Hautes-Alpes as they were climbing below the col. Witnesses came to the rescue of the skiers who were then taken by the mountain rescue to hospital in Briançon. The avalanche risk was 2 with the risk of a group of skiers triggering a slide on north facing slopes due to wind loading.

Around noon on Saturday three ski tourers descending from the Roche Noire near Valmeinier triggered an avalanche. Eye witnesses gave the alert and the skiers were rescued by the PGHM. The avalanche occurred at 2650 meters altitude on a the NW face of the Rocher Noire. The avalanche risk was 3 above 2200 meters due to fresh windslab the the presence of a persistent weak layer.