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Governor Sean Parnell Proclaims November Avalanche Awareness Education Month

For years Alaska has ranked number one for avalanche related deaths per capita. Last winter six people died in avalanches in this state. In the last ten years 129 people have lost their lives in slides.

The good news is that avalanches can be avoided. You just have to know when and where NOT to be. And you have to be prepared.

Do you know what a terrain trap is? How about what slope angle is most likely to slide in an avalanche? Can you recognize the warning signs? Do you know what to do if something happens?

If you don’t know there is an easy way to learn.

The North America Outdoor Institute is on a mission to bring awareness and practical training to residents and visitors of Alaska.  From wilderness survival challenge games that pit players against the realities of Alaska’s backcountry, to three-day, 24-hour avalanche level 1 (certificate) courses, NAOI has a menu of programs sure to fit any mountain traveler’s needs. You can learn more at www.naoiak.org

Other avalanche training programs include the Alaska Avalanche Information Center http://www.alaskasnow.org/ ; Alaska Avalanche School http://www.alaskaavalanche.com/Site/Homepage.html and the Chugach Avalanche Information Center http://www.cnfaic.org/ If you want a course, you can easily find one most weekend’s between December 1 and May 1.

This winter, take the time to learn how you can avoid becoming a statistic. Learn to recognize the warning signs of avalanche danger.

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