Fatal avalanche in the Aiguilles Rouges massif

 

Monday morning 2nd April 2018, a fatal avalanche took place around 11am in the Aiguilles Rouges massif, facing the Mont Blanc.

image: 
The Aiguilles Rouges massif. Photo source: @http://www.geol-alp.com
Fatal avalanche in the Aiguilles Rouges massif
The victim Emmanuel Cauchy called "Doctor Vertical"
Press relase from Eric Fournier, Mayor of Chamonix Mont-Blanc

According to France Bleu, the avalanche crossed a couloir under the Pointe Alphonse-Favre (2,788 meters), a very popular sector for cross-country skiers. Unfortunately, in this avalanche one person has died, three skiers were left injured and one is missing.

A high mountain guide, specialised in treating mountain injuries was killed in the avalanche.

The three skiers injured were evacuated to the hospital in Sallanches, according to the gendarmerie.

Relief operations by the Chamonix PGHM are still in progress to find another victim who may have been trapped in the snow.

The victim Emmanuel Cauchy called "Doctor Vertical"

The victim is Emmanuel Cauchy (58) also called "Doctor Vertical" for his interest in mountain medicine. He was originally from Seine-Maritime, Normandy.

Dr Cauchy who specialised in treating frostbite, was an experienced mountain guide and a former Alpine rescuer.

Emmanuel Cauchy helped in the care of Elizabeth Revol

A pioneer in mountain medicin, Cauchy was very well known in the mountain community. He had helped in the care of Elizabeth Revol after her dramatic rescue from Nanga Parbat (Himalaya) earlier this year. Hospitalized in Islamabad (Pakistan), Elizabeth had benefited from the knowledge of Emmanuel Cauchy on frostbite.

Co-founder of IFREMMONT

Emmanuel Cauchy was one of the founding members of the IFREMMONT  (Mountain Medicine Institute for Training and Research), which has a telemedicine platform to help mountain climbers in difficulty via their mobile phones.

Press relase by the Haute-Savoie prefecture following the death of Cauchy

The prefect of the Haute-Savoie spoke in a press relase of his "strong emotions following the accidental death of an emblematic figure... the mountains have taken one of those who knew them best, one who knew more than anyone the dangers."

Tributes in Social Media, here some:

Fabien Meyer wrote :

Kilian Jornet wrote :

Elisabeth Revol wrote :

Gilou Rǝboisson wrote :

Elodie Arrault wrote :

The avalanche risk is considerable on Tuesday 3rd April 2018. Stay alert!

The avalanche risk is Considerable : heavy snowfall, mild weather and very wet snow.

"For this Tuesday 3rd April 2018, the snow will quickly become wet to very wet in a mild climate and windy with foehn in the high mountains.The level of avalanche risk is 3 to 4 (considerable to strong) at any altitude and on all the massifs".

The prefecture calls for vigilance

The Prefect of Haute-Savoie warns all mountaineers, skiers and hikers on skis or snowshoes to the utmost vigilance and recommends not to ski off-piste without consulting the mountain professionals and without being equipped, as always, essential equipment (have tranceiver probe and shovel).

A good knowledge of the sites does not protect the mountain practitioners.

The snow is present in enough quantity to enjoy the marked and secured pistes.

Do not take risks with your safety and that of the rescuers. Know how to give up. Be responsible.

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