Park Place Lodge
Fernie Search and Rescue

Fernie Search and Rescue (SAR) has been busy recently with two calls to rescue skiers from Fernie’s backcountry.

Fernie SAR responded to a call today to rescue a skier buried in an avalanche on Mount Fernie at around 1300. The avalanche, highly visible from town, was estimated to be a Size 2.5-3, with a crown 150m wide, 60-80cm deep, and a debris pile around 4m deep. As responders, helicopter, and avalanche rescue equipment were being assembled, the two skiers managed to self-rescue without injury.

Fernie Search and Rescue

While the outcome was positive, it serves as a stark reminder of the current snowpack’s instability, as highlighted in the current AvCan forecast, which is expected to climb to “High” from tomorrow onwards. Fernie SAR urges everyone to prioritize safety this weekend, particularly in backcountry settings.

Making incredibly difficult risk decisions is a necessity for SAR when responding to situations like this one. In cases where it is unsafe to enter a site for a rescue, SAR must take steps to mitigate hazards, significantly slowing down their response time.

Fernie Search and Rescue

This past weekend Fernie SAR was called to a cardiac emergency in Mongolia Bowl. The skier was transported to the ski hill and transferred to BCAS.

We are fortunate to have this outstanding volunteer group in our community. Let’s do our part to ensure we travel as safely as possible in the backcountry. Read more on how to Be AdventureSmart.

Fernie Search and Rescue is a wilderness emergency response group that acts on behalf of Emergency Management BC.

The group is comprised of volunteers who assist people in emergencies in the backcountry. Fernie Search and Rescue can be tasked by various agencies, including the RCMP, the British Columbia Ambulance Service or BCAS, Fire /Rescue, local municipalities and the Department of National Defense.

Members of the public needing a SAR response should call 911, ask for the RCMP or BCAS and state that the nature of the emergency is in the backcountry and needs a SAR response.

If you would like to make a donation you can do so online here.

Source/Photos Fernie SAR/Facebook

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