Word on the Street: How important is avalanche safety at Tahoe-Truckee? | SierraSun.com

Word on the Street: How important is avalanche safety at Tahoe-Truckee?

TRUCKEE, Calif. — This week's question: How important is avalanche safety when skiing/riding at Tahoe-Truckee?

Here are the answers, as asked Monday in Truckee:

Jonathan Cahill, Incline Village: "I think it's really important just to get out there and be safe out there and be able to identify hazards and terrain traps."

Brett Wardle, Truckee: "I think it's extremely important. We got a lot of people who aren't from the Tahoe area who don't know how dangerous avalanches are. It takes up a lot of our resources to go out and search for people that are lost. It sucks for them, for their families, for their friends … you got to be aware and pay attention. Take a class; most of the time they're free."

Clay Babic, Truckee: "Avalanche safety's huge, it's the difference between life and death. If you don't know, you shouldn't go. How many people have we already lost this year in Tahoe — two, three? It's no joke."

Steve Hnat, Truckee: "It's extremely important, because it's a really powerful force and you have to have the right knowledge and tools to be safe in the backcountry. And also the fact the backcountry has become so popular, and other people out there too creates a factor of safety that you have to consider."