Rescuing avalanche victims is not an easy job. Let’s understand why it is difficult and risky.
1. Hard Snow
After an avalanche caused the havoc, the snow becomes hard, very hard, that cannot be broken easily. Special skills are required to break this hard snow.
2. Poor Communication Network
In the Indian Himalayas, poor communication networks delay and slow down the rescue operations. Sometimes poor visibility further slows down the rescue process.
Speed of rescue process is very important because the victims may not survive for long under the deep snow. The buried victims may inhale debris and snow that will block the airways. The water vapors from exhaled air may freeze, creating an ice mask over the face. And lack of oxygen can be deadly. That is why a quick action is required for minimizing the casualties.
3. Tool Usage
Tools are available to locate the victims buried under the snow. However, lots of experience in using these tools and practice is required to distinguish among a body, bag, or stone.
During search and rescue operations, the avalanche rescuers may also face more avalanches and blizzards. They may have to work in snowfall or await it to stop. Their lives therefore are always in danger.