3 Soldiers Killed in Hautes Alpes Avalanche

Three members of a group of seven soliders have been killed by an avalanche close to Saint-Etienne-en-Dévoluy in the Hautes-Alpes department. The avalanche occured at 2000 meters altitude in the Vallon d’Ane below the Pic de Bure and was around 1.5 meters deep and 200 meters long. The group were part of the 7ieme regiment de materiel de Lyon who have a training base nearby at l’Alpe du Grand Serre.

A fourth member of the group was rescued suffering from hypothermia and taken by hospital to Gap. The group were ski mountaineering at the time as part of an army mountain leader training course. There had been up to 50cm of fresh snow in the area accompanined by strong winds.

Helicopters were deployed from the nearby ski resort of l’Alpe d’Huez, from the civilian rescue service based at le Versoud north of Grenoble and from the PGHM base at Briançon along with 20 mountain rescue speciliasts and doctors. The avalanche occured in a bowl about 700 meters wide where there were large snow accumulations. The first member of the group passed without incident, the avalanche was triggered by one of the following skiers. The group were maintaining a wide spacing at the time and were all equipped with avalanche beacons.


Posted by on Tuesday, 31 January, 2006 at 08:51 PM

It is sad to return from Munich to hear this news. I competed against some of the skiers from the 7th division at the Rallye des Crêtes last winter. As professional military personel risk goes with the job but this will be a big blow to the division and their friends and families.

Posted by davidof on  Wednesday, 01 February, 2006  at 12:00 AM

The Grenoble prosecutor has decided to open an case concerning manslaughter and bodily harm following an avalanche that killed three soldiers on the 31st of January 2006 close to the Pic du Bure in the Dévoluy mountain range. An inquiry carried out by specialists attached to the Gendarmerie of the Hautes-Alpes department and specialist mountain police (PGHM) from Briançon has established that excessive risk was taken during the exercise. A prosecuting judge will be appointed in the next few days.

Posted by davidof on  Tuesday, 28 March, 2006  at 07:48 PM

The appeal court in Grenoble has confirmed that there is no case to answer following the Pic de Bure avalanche which killed three soldiers. This confirms the findings of May 2007.

The victims were part of a group of seven soliders. The accident happened in a 700 meter wide bowl where large quantities of snow had accumulated under the influence of the wind. The group leader traversed the bowl without incident. The avalanche occured when the rest of the group followed. The victims were spaced 150-200 meters. The avalanche took almost the full width of the bowl.

On the 25th of May 2007 the courts found no case to answer following the request of the prosecutor but one of the families of the victims appealed this decision.

Posted by davidof on  Tuesday, 04 December, 2007  at 03:09 PM
Page 1 of 1 pages

Comments are now closed



Archive Summary

Forum Posts

Sunday, 19 May, 2013

Girl survives 4 nights out at 4000m on the Vert

Posted by juice at 11:44 PM
• (3) Posts • (1894) views •

Monday, 29 April, 2013

Colorado's deadliest slide in 50 years

Posted by Simon Scott at 01:41 PM
• (3) Posts • (1583) views •


Thursday, 25 April, 2013

PGHM Officer killed near Ref Argentiere

Posted by juice at 01:38 PM
• (5) Posts • (1646) views •

Friday, 19 April, 2013

avalanche in st christophe

Posted by davidski at 11:32 AM
• (1) Posts • (1401) views •

Monday, 15 April, 2013

Avalanche on the Tete de Chevrette, Vallorcine

Posted by Alan Scowcroft at 04:57 PM
• (1) Posts • (1384) views •

Thursday, 11 April, 2013

Alpine Bindings

Posted by djfrost at 10:08 PM
• (10) Posts • (1527) views •