An avalanche is a natural disaster. It is made out of snow and rocks. For an avalanche to occur there has to be snow and a ledge or an angle of about 30 degrees. Then you need a storm to be happening or a storm to recently have happened. The storm blows more snow on a specific area and will make the snow too heavy so it slides down. They can trap people giving them hyperthermia or suffocating them. Some avalanche survivors have frostbite meaning they have lost their hands or nose forever.
HOW PEOPLE PREPARE FOR AN AVALANCHE?
You should practice locating people by building a pile of snow and throwing a weight inside the pile. This is a good method because the weight should be quite heavy which simulates the weight of a person.
Prepare a room on the ground floor of your house with enough food and water to survive several days. Make sure you can contact the authorities from this room. Give your phone number to the local avalanche authorities. Learn how to use rescue equipment so you know how to save people. Arrange accommodation with friends or family outside the endangered zone. Stay away from steep slopes and consult an expert about the safety in certain areas. Constantly evaluate the conditions of the mountain.
HOW CAN AVALANCHES BE PREDICTED?
People can predict avalanches by digging out a trench and then having a piece of snow in the middle. After that one person squats on it. Then they jump until it falls. This tests the strength of the snow, so that professionals can predict when the avalanche will happen to make it safer for everyone. People also check for hollow sounds by jumping on the snow.
They can also see if its avalanche season. The risk of an avalanche is assessed by the amount of snowfall and the time passed since the last Avalanche. Sometimes people ski along fracture lines to see how weak they are. They also use zoomed in satellite pictures.
HOW CAN PEOPLE AVOID AVALANCHES?
First, everyone can set up stone walls. Then a professional can blow off a chunk of snow that’s loose with an explosive device so the avalanche will not happen at a worse time. You need to stay away from areas with weak snow. You should never climb a mountain right after a storm. Stay away from wind loaded slopes. Check the angle of the mountain to see the chance of an avalanche happening. Avalanches mainly happen at 25degrees to 40degrees. Stay on the windward side of the mountain. Stay on the highest part of the slope.
WHAT TO DO IF AN AVALANCHE IS HAPPENING?
Tie a bright coloured string to you and let it trail 30 metres behind you. Zip up your jacket, put on your hood and pull the drawstrings. It helps you by making you not get hyperthermia as fast, even do this if you are hot. Be ready to throw of your backpack which will make you lighter. Go one at a time when crossing dangerous areas. Wear an avalanche rescue beacon. Carry a small shovel and a long probe. If an avalanche happens grab a tree. Go to the surface of the avalanche. Do not leave the building you are in and prepare to evacuate.
I hope you have learned something new from this text.
IMAGE OF A BOMB MAKING AN AVALANCHE