Detailed Accident Report

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Date: 2008-02-16
Submitted By: WWAN
Place: Keystone Mountain
State: BC
Country: CANADA
Fatalities: 1
Summary: 2 snowmobilers caught, 1 buried and killed

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Avalanche Involvement Report

This report was submitted to the CAC by British Columbia Coroner?s Service in the interest of public safety.

The CAC makes no claim as to its authenticity or accuracy. Use and interpret at your own risk.


Date/Time: 2008-02-16 15:30

Description: Keystone Mt

Coordinates: 118 20.2 51 26.8 (Geographic (long-lat))

Mtn Range: Selkirk Mountain Range Province: BC


Activity: Snowmobiling


Number: 1 Size: Size class 2 Type: Slab avalanche

Trigger: Ma ()

Dimension: 50m wide; average slab depth of 35cm.

Failure Pl.: Old - ~/~

Starting Zone: Location: Treeline.

Character: S; Windward Slope(s); Terrain Trap.

Sparse immature trees on slope. Flat slope which flowed into a gully with 35 - 40 degree incline.

Comment: Gully gave way to flatter (5 degree) terrain. Teardrop shaped deposit approx. 60 m long and 25 m wide below gulley constriction. Deposit average 2.0 m deep with a maximum depth approx. 3.0 m deep. Deceased located mid-way down deposit. 2 fracture lines observed: one high on the slope and one mid-slope on climbers left.


Number of people involved: 2 caught only; 1 completely buried.

Number of people injured: 1 deceased.


Weather: Precipitation: nil over past 48 hours. No signs of thaw instability. Mostly clear sky with some clouds.

Snowpack: Dry winter snowpack approx. 2.5 - 3.0 m deep.


One fatality in a party of 13. Party entered the Keystone Mtn area on Feb 16, 2008. They split into two smaller groups and began highmarking in the area. Deceased was the first person to climb a slope while the others in his group observed him power out near the top of the slope. He had just turned his snowmobile when the slope suddenly started to slide. The deceased and his machine started rolling down the slope approximately 100 m while two other riders managed to ride out of the slide. No other people were involved. The deceased was found approx. 21 minutes later buried approximately 3 m deep. Backpack contained shovel, probe, and transceiver and deceased was wearing his pack when found. He was a very experienced operator. He had not taken an avalanche course.


No attachments.

Date and Time of Report: 2008-02-18 13:19

The CAC Forecaster Team thanks the observers for

their contribution to avalanche safety in Canada!