WxTalk Webinar #38


Webinar #38 - Thursday, January 22, 2015

"Avalanches in the US … In a Nutshell"

Simon Trautman
National Avalanche Specialist
Forest Service National Avalanche Center
Bozeman, MT


Avalanches impact public safety within backcountry recreation areas, along roadways, and at many ski areas. In addition, avalanches kill more people annually on National Forests than any other natural hazard (each winter, approximately 30 people die in avalanches in the United States). Nearly all of these deaths involve recreation on NFS lands. The Forest Service believes in providing reasonably safe recreational opportunities for the public. As such, our goal is to provide information, education, and planning tools designed to reduce avalanche risk and improve backcountry and ski area safety.

Avalanche centers publish daily avalanche advisories and other public safety products that are accessed more than six million times each winter. These centers also provide avalanche related education to tens of thousands of people annually. The USFS operates a network of 14 backcountry avalanche centers that are supported in large part by public donations and other partnerships (often 50% of the costs). We also work closely with the Colorado Avalanche Information Center and various ski resorts and highway departments that actively manage avalanche hazards.

This presentation will give an overview of avalanche phenomena, describe the impact avalanches have on public safety and commerce, and describe the measures taken in the US to reduce the risk avalanches pose to the public. 

View the Webinar by clicking here: http://youtu.be/Nj5YT_RnL40

View Simon Trautman's presentation slides (4MB)


Forest Service National Avalanche Center