• Entry
  • Reader's guide
  • Entries A-Z
  • Subject index

Avalanches

  • By: Thomas Schmidlin
  • In: Encyclopedia of Disaster Relief
  • Edited by: K. Bradley Penuel & Matt Statler
  • Subject:Public Health (general), Public Policy (general)

An avalanche is a slide of snow down a slope. It originates in what is called a starting zone, typically high up on a slope, beneath cornices, or in a bowl on a mountainside. The avalanche continues along the avalanche track of snow movement. The avalanche track commonly follows a slope or chute that is treeless and has debris deposited by the avalanche at the bottom of the slope. The track may be just a few feet long, or several hundreds of feet long. The avalanche ends where the snow stops in a runout zone, the site of the largest piles of snow and debris such as trees and rocks.

Snow avalanches may occur as a loose snow slide or as a slab avalanche depending ...

    • Loading...
    locked icon

    Sign in to access this content

    Get a 30 day FREE TRIAL

    • Watch videos from a variety of sources bringing classroom topics to life
    • Read modern, diverse business cases
    • Explore hundreds of books and reference titles