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Air bags couldn’t help McBride avalanche victims

After an avalanche near McBride, B.C. killed five people, including a County of Grande Prairie man, the B.C. Coroners Services and Avalanche Canada are urging people to be prepared when heading into the backcountry.

41 year old Tony Christopher Greenwood was snowmobiling in a group of 17 people when the avalanche hit on January 29th. Most of them reportedly had proper equipment on them, and their efforts to rescue themselves and others are believed to have prevented the loss of more lives.

Chief coroner Lisa Lapointe says three of the five deceased had deployed avalanche air bags that are designed to float someone along the surface of a moving avalanche. However, they didn’t work because they were in an area where the flow is too constricted.

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