Detailed Accident Report

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Date: 2007-04-02
Submitted By: NWAC
Place: 230 km North of Smithers, Delta Peak area
State: BC
Country: CANADA
Fatalities: 2
Summary: 5 heli-skiers caught, 3 injured, 2 buried and killed

UPDATE

BC Coroner?s Service, April 4, 2007 at 3:40 pm

Update on NW BC fatal avalanche accident

Avalanche accident occurred at 1022 hours. Elevation at crown was 1835 m. Avalanche

was a size 4, width 580 metres, length 500 metres. Slab averaged 1 metre in thickness.

Slope incline at trigger point was 35?. The slope is smooth, open and slightly convex at

the top. The slope angle is between 35-40? and faces SW.

Weather at the time of accident was sunny with scattered clouds. Winds were light from

the north. Previous to the accident, winds were moderate from the northeast. Temperature

at the time of the accident was -14? C.

The date of the last major storm was March 28, when 25 cm fell under temperatures

ranging from -4.4? C to +3.8? C at treeline.

April 2, 2007

Source: Last Frontier Heliskiing

Update: April 3, 2007

The RCMP have released information that one of the deceased was a male of

Japanese origin and the other a Canadian female.

The incident occurred mid-morning 230km north of Smithers in the Delta Peak area.

The weather was clear with ? 10? c Temperature and good visibility. The slide was of

a 3.5 size at an elevation of 1300 Meters.

A group of 5 guests and their guide were caught in the slide. Three of the group were

injured and airlifted to nearby medical facilities.

Original release April 2, 2007

An avalanche north of Smithers, British Columbia, has killed two skiers. Three other

skiers in the party were rescued and airlifted to nearby medical facilities.

Those involved were skiing with Last Frontier Heliskiing, located 230 km north of

Smithers, British Columbia. Further information is not available at this time.

***Media Reports***

Please visit: www.canada.com

Two skiers die in northern B.C. avalanche

By Darah Hansen, Vancouver Sun

Published: Tuesday, April 03, 2007

Two people are dead and another three were taken to hospital following a deadly avalanche in a remote location in northern B.C. popular with backcountry skiers.

All five people involved in the avalanche were skiing with Last Frontier Heliskiing, a backcountry recreation company with a lodge located about 230 km north of Smithers.

According to information provided by the company Monday night, trained staff were able to initiate rescue efforts ?within minutes? of the avalanche.

No information was released Monday identifying those injured or killed in the incident, including their names or where they were from. Company spokesman Mike Watling also had no information on the severity of the injuries sustained by the three rescued skiers.

In a media release, Watling said the company was ?deeply saddened? by the tragedy and offered its ?deepest sympathies to friends and family of the victims.?

Watling said the company was bringing in a team of counsellors to help guests and staff deal with the incident. He added officials have been in contact with local authorities, including RCMP.

?We will be cooperating fully with any investigations,? Watling said.

Warning of ?considerable? avalanche conditions were posted Friday on the Canadian Avalanche Centre website for the region where the incident occurred. A winter storm that hit the area late last week had increased avalanche danger, the website states.

The danger level had been predicted to decline over the weekend, to a ?moderate? to ?low? risk as of Monday. However, ?impressive? widespread dry and wet snow avalanches had been reported in high snowfall areas near the coast.

?Watch for rising temperatures and increasing wind the next few days; either are likely to get avalanches rolling again,? the website states.

RCMP did not return phone calls Monday night.

Date: 4/2/2006

Location: Last Frontier Heli Ski, BC

Incident: 4 heli-skiers caught, 2 partly buried, 2 totally buried and killed (dug out within 12 minutes with 30 minutes CPR)

Avalanche: HS-AS-D3.5-O,, ~170 cm crown, probably releasing on old facets over a thin crust

Slope: ~40 degree slope

April 2, 2007

Heliski Organization Saddened by Avalanche Deaths

An avalanche north of Smithers, British Columbia, has killed two skiers today. Three

other skiers in the party were rescued and airlifted to nearby medical facilities.

Those involved were skiing with Last Frontier Heliskiing, located 230 km north of

Smithers, British Columbia.

?We are clearly saddened by this tragedy. Our deepest sympathies go to the friends and

family of the victims,? says Last Frontier spokesperson Mike Watling.

?Our focus right now is taking care of our guests and staff, and their families. We are

bringing in a counseling team, and have been in contact with local authorities, including

the RCMP. We will be cooperating fully with any investigations.?

?We are grateful to the professionalism of our trained staff, who were able to begin

rescue efforts within minutes of the incident.?

Unfortunately, Last Frontier is unable to provide any further details at this time.

Update from Last Frontier Heliskiing

We are cooperating with the RCMP and the BC Coroner's service who are conducting an

investigation into the incident which occurred yesterday.

The RCMP have released information that one of the deceased was a male of Japanese origin

and the other a Canadian female.

The incident occurred mid-morning 230km north of Smithers in the Delta Peak area.

The weather was clear with ? 10 c Temperature and good visibility. The slide was of a 3.5 size

at an elevation of 1300 Meters.

A group of 5 guests and their guide were caught in the slide. Three of the group were injured

and airlifted to nearby medical facilities.

"Our focus remains on taking care of those guests and staff at the lodge," says Mike Watling of

Last Frontier Heliskiing, "again we'd like to reiterate our gratefulness to those professional

staff involved in the rescue, who were on the scene within minutes.