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Search luckily revealed no avalanche victimsPosted: April 2, 2012

Columbia Valley RCMP Detachment April 1 received a mid afternoon report of an avalanche in the area known as Jessie’s Monster near Taynton Bowl, which is just outside the ski boundary area for Panorama Mountain Village.

“At the time of the call two people were known to have possibly been in the slide path. It was determined that two skiers residing locally were in the area at the time when the avalanche was initiated,” reported Columbia Valley detachment NCO S/Sgt. Marko Shehovac.

“An adult male skied down first while an adult female went down next and appeared to have triggered the avalanche. The adult male was able to ski out of the path while the female was caught up in the slide and received no life threatening injuries. She was taken to the Invermere hospital,” Shehovac stated.

The immediate concern at the time of the call was that a group of five to six people were observed in the same area of the path and conflicting reports were received that they were also caught in the avalanche, he continued.

Immediate response was made to the scene, with an RCMP dog called in along with other trained avalanche dogs.

Invermere Search and Rescue, Golden Search and Rescue, Panorama Fire/Rescue, Panorama Ski Patrol, Toby Creek Adventure guides as well as a RK Heli Ski helicopter responded.

Over 50 rescuers were on scene and immediately began an organized probe line. No debris could be located, there were no beacon transmission signals being detected.

“During the search the group that were believed to be in the area were located and spoken to and it was determined that these were the same group of skiers who were believed to have also been caught up in the avalanche.  Regardless, the probing and search continued to approximately 6:45 p.m. until the search team were satisfied that no other persons were caught in this avalanche.  No persons were reported missing or overdue,” Shehovac noted.

“The detachment would like to thank all of the rescue personal that responded as quickly as they did,” Shehovac concluded.

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