22.01.2018 | 10:00 | News
As a result of fresh snow and higher temperatures, very high avalanche danger over widespread areas
Following a situation in which there were already extraordinary amounts of snow on the ground, an additional 80 to 100 cm of fresh snow have been registered over the last two days in the Valais, on the northern flank of the Alps and in northern Grisons, with even more in some parts of the valleys of Visp and the Glarner Alps.
The intense precipitation is expected to persist throughout the day on Monday. By evening, an additional 40 to 80 cm of fresh snow is anticipated in northern regions, 20-40 cm in southern Valais and northern Grisons. The snowfall level will ascend to over 2000 m for a short time, raising avalanche danger still further. That, in turn, will lead to wet-snow avalanches at intermediate elevations. The SLF ranks the avalanche danger prevailing on Monday, 22 January, in the following regions at the highest possible danger level (5, “very high”):
- practically the entire Valais
- large sectors of the northern Alpine Ridge
- from Prättigau over the Silvretta into Samnaun
This danger level prevails only very rarely. The last time this level was assigned over such widespread surface areas was in the ‘avalanche winter’ 1999, at that time for an extended period. A great many avalanches, in some cases quite large-sized avalanches, can be expected. These avalanches can flow down into the valleys and put seldom endangered transportation routes and buildings at risk. The instructions issued by public offices and local safety authorities must be heeded. In the regions concerned, it is advised to refrain from any skiing and freeriding activities away from secured ski runs.
When this precipitation period comes to an end on Tuesday, a gradual improvement in the avalanche situation can be expected.
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For further information, please consult the Avalanche Bulletin