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Portrait of Senator Lyda Green Senator Lyda Green
State Capitol, Room 125
Juneau, AK 99801-1182
Phone: (907) 465-6600
Fax: (907) 465-3805
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For Immediate Release: April 10, 2000

Senate Raises Awareness of Avalanche Danger

Juneau -- The Alaska Senate highlighted the danger of avalanches when it passed a resolution Monday that would declare November 2000 "Avalanche Awareness Month."

"While avalanches can be difficult to predict and prevent, education on the dangers of avalanches and the conditions in which they are likely to occur can save lives," said Senator Lyda Green (R-Matanuska-Susitna), a supporter of the resolution. "This proclamation would raise public awareness of the hazards associated with avalanches, and of the opportunities to participate in avalanche safety training courses."

Every year there are deaths in Alaska due to avalanches. In 1999, 14 people lost their lives. This spring produced devastating avalanches along the Seward Highway and in Cordova, and saw a small slide within walking distance of downtown Juneau. On April 8 of this year, two more lives were lost to avalanches, one near Talkeetna, the other near the site of the Arctic Man competition, highlighting the need for avalanche awareness programs.

"Senate Concurrent Resolution 16, sponsored by the Senate State Affairs Committee, was drafted at the request of the Backcountry Avalanche Awareness Response Team (BAART)." said Green. "The organization was formed by the families of avalanche victims who wanted to prevent more avalanche deaths. BAART is comprised of trained volunteers who provide search and rescue services following slides, and who educate the public on avalanche safety."

SCR 16 moves to the House for consideration.

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