Avalanche science and prevention

Most avalanche accidents happen off the secured piste. Except in guided groups, everyone is responsible for their own safety in this "open terrain". With basic knowledge, simple concepts and tools, the risk of avalanches can be minimised to an acceptable level.

The SLF recommends that freeriders and ski tourers inform themselves about the current avalanche danger, equip themselves correctly (avalanche transceiver, shovel, probe), make avalanche-relevant observations in the terrain and behave appropriately according to the conditions. However, there is no such thing as absolute safety in avalanche terrain. If an avalanche accident occurs despite preventive measures, it is important not to lose any time. In the first 15 minutes after an avalanche burial, there is the best chance of rescuing buried victims alive. However, companion rescue can only be successful if all group members have practised and mastered the initial rescue measures. We recommend that people who have no experience in assessing avalanche danger do not leave the secured descents or routes, or join a professionally guided group. If you want to acquire the necessary avalanche knowledge, it is best to attend an avalanche course and prepare yourself with a few basics.

The comprehensive White Risk platform (whiterisk.ch and app) offers many opportunities to acquire avalanche knowledge, obtain up-to-date snow and avalanche information and plan tours and freeride descents.




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