11 Dec 2011

Hazard Acceptance        Risk Tolerance          Hazard Analysis             Human Factors




This picture was taken prior to all the new terminology used in the avalanche world. Risk tolerance is a term used in Finance, in the Avalanche industry it is a relatively new, commonly used term.  A hazard is defined as a "Condition, event, or circumstance that could lead to or contribute to an unplanned or undesirable event". Human factors is another term which started during World War II when pilot and machine had to become one!!  Hazard analysis is used as the first step in the process to assess risk.


This individual is skiing a south west exposure at the end of the day in a shallow snow pack above a cliff band with no companion. The photographer is a fair distance away, patrol has long gone for the day. This individuals acceptance of exposure to potential hazards is very high.

In my career I have gone to many avalanche incidents where the individual has been badly injured or killed. Ironically most of those individuals had just completed their CAA Level 1 course. The new terminology is very important and everyone should pay attention. Play hard but be safe!!!