Avalanche Center Warns Canyon Residents Of ‘Roofalanches’
LITTLE COTTONWOOD CANYON, Utah – The Utah Avalanche Center warned people Wednesday to be cautious around cabins with steep, snow-covered roofs.
Avalanche forecaster Craig Gordon said warmer temperatures moving through the area can contribute to “roofalanches”.
“We’re feeling pretty safe and cozy inside. We’re not thinking about walking out the door and getting slammed by an avalanche crashing off of our roofs,” Gordon said.
Rooftop avalanches happen when warmer temperatures combine with heat from inside cabins to start melting the bottom layer of snow.
When that bottom layer of snow on the rooftop becomes unstable, the entire slab can fall.
The slabs are heavy enough to seriously injure or even kill people.
“They’re on a slick, steel roof. Once those things take off, everything goes. These pieces of snow are packing heat,” Gordon said.
Gordon said there had been several rooftop avalanches over the past few days.
He said one in Brian Head buried a couple of vehicles.
There was another one in Alta early Wednesday morning. Park City issued a warning to residents to be cautious when walking, so as not to end up below roofs holding lots of snow.
Gordon said residents should not try to mitigate the danger by triggering the slabs themselves.
He said the safest thing to do is simply avoid areas below steep roofs.
- Utah police ask for help locating suspect in Amazon robbery (pageviews: 3523)
- Real Housewives of SLC Jennie Nguyen no longer cast member after 'offensive' social media posts (pageviews: 3509)
- Body found in Jordan River, police investigating (pageviews: 3503)
- 3x Region Champs, North Sanpete drill coaches go viral in video (pageviews: 3387)
- Wednesday's Child: Creative 13-year-old Kaydee hopes to find forever family (pageviews: 2864)
- Sewage provides alternative insight into COVID-19 surge direction (pageviews: 2841)