Snow can be our best friend or our worst enemy. To fully enjoy the company of frozen water it is necessary to have certain basic knowledge that can save your life.
Snowslides also known as avalanches are a real threat to skiers, snowboarders and mountain climbers. These are big masses of snow that flow down hillsides with an amazing force that sweeps everything in its path.
The first step towards survival is prevention. The use of appropriate equipment can save your life when facing an extreme situation like this. We must take this very into account before setting a foot on a snowed mountain.
ARVA is an emergency device that alerts of our exact position under the snow; this is a way of assuring your rescue. It is also strongly recommendable even to carry anti-avalanche backpacks. It is very smart to carry out these activities with other people, this will increase your safety, your friend can be your rescuer and vice versa.
During the first seconds of the incident you have to try and run away from the snowslide as soon as possible. Moving over to one side of the avalanche is a good option as the snow slide is slower on the sides and very fast in the center of the flow. If it is already too late to change direction try and hold on trees or rocks you can see. If you are buried by the snow get rid of the equipment that can interpose in your escape, gloves, hats…etc. They can also help you being found if it sticks out of the snow.
They would usually recommend you to swim in the snow but this will probably make you sink even more. Be calm, snow is a porous substance where oxygen can come in. Dig a whole around your face y breath calmly. When you feel the situation is stable try to locate the surface, stick your hand up and try to be visible for your rescuers, try to get out if you think the surface is near. If this is not the case, save energy, your ARVA device is emitting signals and you are about to be rescued!