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Snow patrol expert explains avalanche role

Posted 11 January 2011
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Snow patrol expert explains avalanche role
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An expert who helps keep those heading for the Scottish mountains with their ski goggles safe from avalanches has been explaining how he goes about his work.

The Scotsman newspaper investigated the work of the Sportscotland Avalanche Information Service, which warns people if there is a possible deluge of snow on the way.

Co-ordinator of the team Mark Diggins told the news provider the information provided can help people stay safe in ski areas like Cairn Gorm, where he uses a variety of instruments and skills to assess the snow situation.

He stated: "Most people involved in avalanches trigger the avalanches themselves, so by taking on board the information we provide and using their own observations they can avoid getting caught. I think most people do."

Those skiing at Cairn Gorm this week have been advised there are very good conditions on the popular downhill routes with most of the tows and lifts being open, but warned they face a high risk of avalanches if they go off-piste.