Avalanche. An Inside Look






History at first hand, so to speak. The author caught in an avalanche 21.02.2008 in the Carpathians. It stretched about 640 meters to assess the emergency workers and fully packed snow. Here are his thoughts: - do not think that if the avalanche triggered by you personally, you will have time to understand everything, analyze, and somewhere out there jump - snow is dispersed for a split second, just at the beginning it is difficult to understand, difficult to accept in principle the idea that it is happened, it happened to you, there where it is not supposed to happen ever (I ripped an avalanche on a slope, which never considered avalanche and was not marked on maps avalanche diagrams Ministry of Emergency Situations).

 - Do not count on that experience zarubyvaniya on the slopes will snap and miss a lot of snow "through it" or, as sometimes happens with mikrolavinkami - "between the legs" (I am the very first moment he tried to hack to death with sticks track, but plunged together with them in the moving mass to the shoulders, plus precious fractions of seconds were lost from the very beginning - I just to understand what "went" around when the snow was covered with thousands of cracks and gently floated horizon, and feet first movement was not felt at all). < br />
 - Do not think that "rowing hands" will remain on the surface - it all depends on the roughness of the slope - as in the mountain river, you simply prolong and tighten the same waves and breakers liquid snow - just as helplessly floundering Tuzik, and even if the slope it is better to be grouped so as not to cripple in their own skis / poles / ice ax / cat / backpack / etc ...

 - No need to scream and cry - if you ride / walk correctly, so your friends and see where in you are lost, and if you "soloist", then, as in my case, take care of the conservation of energy and oxygen - they oh so you need!

 - It is not necessary to "fight to the last" in a snow stream - your task is to understand when the avalanche mass begins to stop, and just before you stopped to take care that the hands were a person (I tore the left-hand shoulder strap of a backpack and long-term sports habit allowed to fix the left fist chin and right hand tightened strap down back in handcuffs).




 - Do not dream that after stopping the snow mass you "dig tunnels", "live under the snow for hours" - these are isolated cases in the history of mankind, and they are related to mass gatherings of dry snow, wet snow gets frozen in the same few seconds after stopping - it liquid concrete - and limbs motionless and oxygen so do not miss the snow!

 - Do not panic, calm breathing and heartbeat - depends on how many minutes you live - and if it does not itself strikes the surface, even your friends will take a lot of time to find you and dig, and even if you have already lost consciousness, hold live you should try longer, to prevent the body to cool down quickly - a chance for salvation, and "try to live" in such a situation - is to save power and oxygen, and therefore - to calm down.

 - Do not think that punched a hole to the surface and have access to oxygen, you are 100% stay alive - by digging a large mass of compacted snow will leave a lot of hours, and in completely wet clothing (+ body does not breathe) you will quickly lose strength and the first signs of hypothermia (lethargy, pain in some muscles, inconsistency in the actions, confusion, etc ...) will not take long to wait (I dig up almost 5 hours and was on the surface almost at 21:00 February night).

 - Do not take the salvation of dense snow hugs ensure the survival (in my example, the case appeared on the surface with joyful hysterical cries of "lying to! Not take!", I did not realize that survival has just begun - ahead was the longest night of my life, during which had to continuously move all muscle groups - and this despite the apparent complete loss of strength in digging! - and despite it all the time waiting for hypothermia near and in the morning I was with great difficulty and pain moved "on all fours" 10-15 meters).




 - Do not assume that employees of MES or mining / search / rescue / other groups (as well as your friends) necessarily find you, even if you dug up and gone through the most terrible night in the vertex-promёrzshey wet clothes - you simply can not hear not found (in my case it was possible to find an unstable point of contact and make a call to a friend in Kiev, which picked up the ears of all the Ministry of Emergency Situations - one day I searched several units - damn! yes how many of the Goverly! - several times passed and no one heard my screams and saw the orange fabric - and this despite the fact that I'm quite accurately described the direction in which I was blown away! - the weather has deteriorated greatly, visibility of 10-20 meters, the howling wind goverlyanskom pit / circus is incredible, and thus I acutely conscious report that the following night the body can not survive, despite the fact that the brain is ready to fight at least a week!).




WHAT Recommend:

1. Do not make yourself deliberately challenges - the process of survival brings pleasure only in the event of a positive result - as if nailed to the wooden box and buried 2 meters deep with a memorial inscription at the head - it does not make anyone's honor and brings grief close. < br />
2. What if already happened, we must act very coolly, without launching mechanism panic.

3. Get rid of the attachment of equipment and ski / the board / snowshoe / etc ... Although it was shortened telescopic track gave me a stick in the snow first oxygen. But this was only possible due to the fact that I forgot that day to put on the track stick snegoupornye ring and did not return them to the machine (such as a bad omen). Track stick with the ring would not progressed in the snow an inch.

4. Hands - chin! I read a lot of theorists and various phrases like "Take a fetal position" scare me - but why? Who is the Council? - This was a counselor in the snow? What will I do hands pressed into the snow at my chest / stomach? - IT'S NOTHING. And you need air. A lot of air. Search will be long. And even if you suddenly find, dig will also be very long. From the point of view of a man dying in the snow - indefinitely.

5. Chew snow - mouth hands help - it will increase the chances. In addition, it will accelerate the expansion of air in the face of the capsule (and time - seconds / minutes to do so), flowing over the lip of manure will help you understand where to dig. Do not listen to nonsense like "spit and see where flew" (literally, with one of the forum, the author - the great "guru" Survival in avalanches - under the snow never was) - under the wet snow you will first be thawed 1 millimeter from the face space and remember - under the wet snow completely dark. And the pressure on the chest and on all the internal organs of the vestibular apparatus does not allow to define your position in space, and the pulse beats a sledgehammer to the head.

6. If you still managed to punch a hole and hvatanut air (which has a probability is too low), do not stop, do not relax for a second - you should not console ourselves with the thought that some stage of salvation has already passed safely, inaction - a slow death. < br />
7. Once on the surface, do not go for a vacation, you do not have time for this - cold working against you every second, and the weather can be in the mountains in the evening turn into a nightmare - you know. Immediately Orient where you are, try to use a means of communication and if it is possible - to convey the exact coordinates with GPS-navigator or tracker. In its report does not detract from the problem, not heroism - it is better if you saving side will take all possible steps and you will find in the relative health and adequate than the rest of your message like "everything is OK with me, just a sore leg, help me a little bit down" and find your body a little warm, late for 10 minutes.

8. Try not to disturb the most loved ones on the phone - tell all at the meeting. Lift off only the most reliable friends who will postpone any general international negotiations of national importance and every second will implement a plan for your salvation - this should be enough coolly thinking person. If you are made aware of his state of emergency more than one person, then let each of them on the knowledge of others - their actions must be consistent, so as not to repeat / duplicate each other, not to annoy the same calls the relevant authorities, and not to respond to the set one the same leading questions by the search engines. Time - your life.

9. Ensure a reliable shelter if a further descent is impossible because of the terrain / injuries / hypothermia. Do not go through the snow cornices, through the cracks - the fate of a second chance one day to fools and idiots does not bestow.

10. Provide an opportunity to search engines to find you - bright things, blood on the snow, etc ... No need to stand up and yell at full throat, wasting precious forces - in the mountains you most likely no one will hear, and especially in places where the victim is usually blows . Beat the ice ax / carbine / other metal object to - such sounds in the mountains spread over long distances. It is better that it was immediately clear that this man - do a double, for example, strikes with a slight pause between the series (when everything possible on my part has already been done, I'm more than 2 hours struggling in the hands of beating the titanium lid kotelochka - a little more circles - on its bottom, turning kotelochek in all directions around them and it saved my life - a couple of hours before the planned stop searching one of the groups came clearly to the sound).

11. If you had to organize spending the night / bivouac, do all that on the one hand to protect themselves from freezing and wild animals, but on the other hand - under any sauce do not let yourself off and go to sleep (when I was in the morning already lost consciousness, I realized that after saving it would be the most absurd death, and stuck under his cheeks and under his beard soft tissue sharp objects, relying on them, my head started to clone stumbled on pain and I again throws).

12. Take care of any resources that you have - water, gas, crackers, candies, etc ... Now you're not so hungry to shamelessly eat what you really need after two or three days.

13. Do not try to compensate for the loss of moisture by the body, absorbing the snow - one day burst gums and lips to bleeding wounds, and you did not get drunk.

14. God knows ... Remember - write. Ask - can so easily something pops in my head.

Yes, here's another ... Dear freeriders and climbers! Communicating constantly with like-minded people, I realized that most katalschikov and mountaineers believe that the concept of "wet / wet avalanche" arose where is wet snow - or in small mountains, or even more so in the off-season. Drop this error once and for all. The driest frosty Pukhlyak seconds movement in avalanche mass at high speed becomes wet (regardless of the ambient temperature!), And the mass of one cubic meter of wet snow reaches 0.8 tons! - Believe me, the person must be quite a bit!

CONCLUSIONS.
 - Yes, I began to treat with due respect for the snow, though not stopped all year to go to the mountains. Over the past 3.5 years conducted a lot of outreach, not only among mountain climbers / mountaineers / skiers / bordistov, but also at the invitation of employees of MES.

 - Not always lavinschiki give accurate information. This year, we turned to the spices in the avalanche station (keep silent, who and where), which gave us the assurance that nothing will come down nowhere. People with known all over the country's name literally said, "You know who I am? I will personally give a guarantee that has everything that had come down in the area - got away. Avalanche season is over. " The next day, a few kilometers from the avalanche station we came to lifting. Slope I did not like. Something alarmed. I have told the boys camp, and he took a snow shovel and started digging. And, sorry, shocked ... top 10 centimeters of soft snow, then 20-30-centimeter almost icy board, underneath 1.5-2.5 meters of wet gray very large granular snow and wet last year's grass. Guys have changed in the people. On this day all speculated about the value derived from information specialists, we went back to camp and have completed these days sort of a semi-dnёvkoy. The next day, went in the other direction, where we draw tips are not required (years of experience) and the solution in the freezing height.

 - Do not look for avalungi / ribbons / beepers / schupery / sobakery ... Yes, they add a chance of survival, but guarantee nothing. After his PE I took a lot of time involved in finding and digging out the "victims of snow." Picture depressing. Mutilated bodies, squeezed in all unimaginable poses, snow clogged lungs, nostrils, eyes, ears ... And watch-clock-hours of time spent on gouging people cubes compacted snow to get to the body, but still manage to not break when you remove it. It is because the glass ... And looking at frozen in a curved back posture the body (legs right up to the head got heels!) In steep road snaryagu tied for transport to steep his own skis, and then further - is attached to the shield snowcat ropes, you begin to understand - nothing I would not have saved, if the fact was not the will of the Lord.

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