FF Safety: Out-of-Bounds at Tunnel Creek

 

Social Factors and Risk Assessment

Tunnel Creek Avalanche

This past February 19th, 16 highly experienced skiers and snowboarders, making up an impromptu group, attempted an out-of-bounds run near Stevens Pass, Washington.

These expert skiers had read the avalanche forecast and were thoroughly familiar with the dangers posed after a 32-inch snowfall, yet they went ahead.

The ensuing avalanche killed three.

The New York Times has created a stunning visual presentation of the event that is a must see. When you do, substitute “collapse”, “flash-over” and “interior firefighting” for “avalanche” and”skiing”. Ask yourself if you would make the same risk assessment. Ask yourself if you would behave differently.

Several skiers survived, one because of the deployment of personal protective equipment. Their experiences are crucial because they spotted and heeded the signs ahead.

Warning: Don’t click on the link unless you are prepared to be pulled into a gripping vortex of words, sights and sounds. We can all learn from their experience.

The link:

http://www.nytimes.com/projects/2012/snow-fall/#/?part=tunnel-creek

 

(Credits: NYT and Alan Ross)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

FE Talk: Humpday Hangout

Comments
Joe Kameros
Politics: Cruz and His Racist Tea-Baggers
Little hard on the Hispanic guy there Eric.....hasn't the left worn out the "tea baggers" moniker......how about something new?
2015-03-26 23:34:28
Eric Lamar
Safety Gaps: Learning from Columbia
M- Thank for writing. Here's what Bill Hand, a foremost firefighter safety professional had to say about the comparison, not just to firefighting, but worker safety in a universal sense: "A great example to use when discussing almost anything that has to do with safety." NASA leadership is ultimately responsible for the procedural and systemic…
2015-03-23 15:09:10
Miguel A Lima
Safety Gaps: Learning from Columbia
Hi Eric. I just read your report from the space shuttle disasters and although it truly is a shame how people have become complacent in their responsibilities, to compare NASA to the Fire Service or vise versa is a little far reaching. I do agree that we've all become guilty of normalizing risk but there…
2015-03-23 15:04:41
Eric Lamar
Safety Gaps: Learning from Columbia
Thanks, Cortez. I will give serious thought to that! Eric
2015-03-23 13:07:01
Eric Lamar
Safety Gaps: Learning from Columbia
Thanks, Bill. If the best can let things slip (twice) it shows the challenge of keeping safety "fresh" in our minds. Eric
2015-03-23 13:05:54
IAFFLogo
December 2012
M T W T F S S
« Nov   Jan »
 12
3456789
10111213141516
17181920212223
24252627282930
31  

FireEMS Blogs eNewsletter

Sign-up to receive our free monthly eNewsletter

LATEST FIREFIGHTER NEWS

HOT FORUM DISCUSSIONS

LATEST ON FIRE ENGINEERING

FEATURED DISCUSSIONS