Avalanche investigators from the Colorado Avalanche Information Center (CAIC) must testify in the trial of Evan Hannibal and Tyler DeWitt according to Judge Casias. He dismissed a motion from the Attorney General’s Office to void subpoenas to keep them off the witness stand.

On March 25 DeWitt and Hannibal were snowboarding above the Loop Road at the Eisenhower/Johnson Memorial Tunnels. They triggered an avalanche. Nobody was injured but it covered more than 400 feet of the roadway up to 20 feet deep and damaged a remote avalanche-control installation.

The District Attorney charged both snowboarders with misdemeanor counts of reckless endangerment.

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Snow avalanche blocked the road Triloknath-Udaipur link near Shakoli village in tribal Lahaul-Spiti district today. The snow avalanche was triggered during the day, which brought the traffic movement on this road to a complete halt.

Heaps of snow covered the vast stretch of the road though no loss of life and property was reported.

Deputy Commissioner Lahaul Spiti Pankaj Rai said workforce and machinery have been deployed in the area to restore this link road for movement of vehicles.

As weather is getting warmer in the region, the incidents of snow avalanches were occurring frequently in Lahaul-Spiti. A few days ago snow avalanches were triggered at Karpat and Lobar under Udaipur sub division in the district.

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Avalanche

Avalanche testimony by Colorado Avalanche Information Center boss Ethan Green in a criminal case could hinder the function of the agency, according to the state Attorney General.

Evan Hannibal provided his helmet video of the avalanche he triggered above Interstate 70 last March. The avalanche buried a service road and destroyed an avalanche mitigation installation protecting I-70. He thought the Colorado Avalanche Information Center (CAIC) would use his submission to help educate others.

But Summit County prosecutors used the video for a criminal case. They seek restitution for the damaged avalanche mitigation device.

Now Attorney General Weiser has stepped in, asking Judge Casias to reject having state employees testify. He cites several reasons, such as their busy winter work schedules.

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A volunteer ski patroller started an "Are You Beeping?" project to help save lives in the Cascade mountains.

Waller's project “Are You Beeping?” installs avalanche beacon test sites and signage at resort gates and forest trailheads before users enter risky terrain. It's a chance for explorers to turn on their avalanche beacons. The signs also include information about avoiding risky terrain and unstable snow conditions.

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Juneau’s urban avalanche forecast is for “extreme” Juneau avalanche danger as of Saturday evening. There is a potential for “historic avalanches” in residential areas. City officials recommend that residents in the avalanche zone in downtown Juneau evacuate their homes.

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Two Alpine Meadows avalanche lawsuits have been filed by the widow and a friend of a dead skier. They accuse the resort of negligently rushing to open the unsafe slopes for a busy holiday weekend.

Cole Comstock, 34, of Blairsden, California, was killed. His close friend Kaley Bloom was seriously injured. They were caught in an avalanche on an Alpine Meadows ski run on Jan. 17, 2020. Nobody else was seriously hurt.

The two Alpine meadows avalanche lawsuits were filed in Placer County Superior Court by Bloom and by Cole’s widow. They seek unspecified damages from Alpine Meadows. The allegations include negligence, gross negligence and breach of contract. Raymond’s lawsuit also alleged the resort was to blame for her late husband’s death.

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Friday started as a perfect winter day. About a foot of new snow fell overnight. In the morning the sky cleared. Then by the end of the day the Sierra Avalanche Center had received many avalanche reports. Some happened naturally but many were caused by skiers and snowboarders.

In the morning the Sierra Avalanche Center posted its forecast. The center stated the obvious - that storm slabs in the new snow were a big concern. They rated the avalanche danger as “considerable,” meaning that skiers and snowboarders were likely to trigger avalanches.

The Sierra Avalanche Center works to prevent accidents by issuing daily forecasts. The U.S. Forest Service hires three full-time avalanche forecasters who backcountry ski and then write reports. The Sierra Avalanche Center fundraises on behalf of the U.S. Forest Service to cover much of the payroll and related expenses. There are also three part-time paid observers who go skiing to check on conditions.

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Avalanche

Two avalanche defendants, snowboarders, are facing charges and a $168,000 fine for an avalanche that threatened I-70. A judge just dismissed their motion to dismiss video of the avalanche they gave to Colorado Avalanche Information Center.

A Summit County Court judge dismissed a motion to suppress a GoPro video of the avalanche. Evan Hannibal and Tyler DeWitt had given the video to the Colorado Avalanche Information Center (CAIC).

The video is evidence in the Summit County District Attorney’s case against Hannibal and DeWitt. They are charged with reckless endangerment and could face a $168,000 fine. These are the first criminal charges ever filed against skiers involved in an avalanche in Colorado.

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An elk survived an avalanche after being rescued by a nearby observer.

Jesse Dahlberg was watching railroad avalanche control crews use explosives to start relatively small avalanches near Field British Columbia. He noticed a lone elk was in the path of one of the avalanches.

“I didn’t know how big the avalanche was going to be so I was hoping for the best. When I saw it, I thought there’s no way that elk is going to survive.” Dahlberg said.

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Avalanche bombing experts work to ensure the safety of rescuers working on the ground. And on Sunday search and rescue crews worked on an avalanche recovery mission in Summit County.

“Avalanche bombing requires the pilot and a crew of three comprised out of the various ski resort areas. You have a controller and a bomber and a prepper," pilot Bret Hutchings said.

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