Local Agency prepares Utahns for potential avalanches at annual workshop

SALT LAKE CITY -- The Utah Avalanche Center says there have been no avalanche-related fatalities across the state in over two years.

FOX 13 spoke to Utahns, who say they credit the lack of fatalities to the center and the services they provide to backcountry recreationalists.

Winter is on our doorstep. This is why around 1,000 people flocked to Sandy for the 11th annual Utah Snow and Avalanche Workshop.

"We have backcountry skiers, snowboarders, split boarders, snowshoers, hunters, hikers, snowmobilers," says Craig Gordon, an avalanche forecaster for the Utah Avalanche Center.

Organizers say they hold this event to talk about safety gear, avalanche avoidance, and share stories from those who have been affected.

"I’ve lost several friends in avalanches, and the reality is, we have to keep learning from every mistake and every accident," said Peter Ingle.

Ingle said he got caught in an avalanche himself this past January, in an area by Solitude, and had to be life flighted to safety.

"It’s just crucial to share that information with others so that hopefully people don’t make the same mistakes," Ingle said.

The Utah Avalanche Center says they also host free avalanche awareness classes throughout the winter.