THE AVALANCHE VIEW FROM BELOW

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23/03/2015 13:58 - 15/09/2016 13:50 #1429 da Luciano Ratto
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HERE'S ANOTHER DRAMATIC TESTIMONY FROM PARRTE OF ROLLY COOKED
(Rat Luciano)

The view from under avalanche. So remember Rolly Cotti, Milan instructor mountaineering overwhelmed by an ungrateful fate as he climbed in Val Grisanche
Since, in 2007, an avalanche hit him in Valgrisanche on the way up to Buzzi shelter last stretch not circumvent where the valley is narrower, the Milanese Roberto Cotti Rolly has become a kind of forced reference for similar cases. "The fact that we came under does not make me the guru of the avalanche", points out, however, "indeed, it should be the opposite. The word avalanche, since that fateful April 25, the family has become almost taboo ". Rolly generously in every way he wished to tell his experience intervening - was still recovering on crutches - in 2008 to Palamonti of Bergamo at a "White Day" in which he talked non-stop from morning to night with the snow and avalanches participation of technicians, experts, doctors, actors, choirs and canine units of the CNSAS. All with the organization of the Cultural Commission of the valiant CAI BG. It must be disclosed that Rolly was saved thanks to the timeliness and expertise of fellow who rescued, all of the Italian Alpine Club. In the bottom of the article we also publish a statistical picture of the Italian Snow and Avalanches (AINEVA) on the high mortality rate of accidents in avalanche detail that makes the testimony of Rolly exceptionally interesting.
It seemed a trivial matter, I tried to run away
Who said "I prefer to have luck that talent" perceived the essence of life (Woody Allen in "Match Point"). How many times does a small casual event change the course of our lives? As in the film mentioned, the tennis ball that takes the ribbon can fall indifferently on either side of the net, determining the outcome of the game, so a minute, a centimeter, a word, sometimes they are the difference between succeeding or fail, win or lose, live or die.
Of course, the block of snow that comes off that day, at that moment, at that point, I can not consider a fortunate event. It would have sufficed another minute, maybe half, and I would have been over. If only I had not hesitated to sistemami the tongue of the boot, or had taken a pace a bit 'less touristy. And on the other hand if I am here to write, even if a bit 'bruised, it is only for a set of fortunate circumstances so as to tip the balance of the day strongly in my favor.
First of all my closest companion, a few meters ahead of me, luckily (his and mine) is involved only marginally and, of course, self-rescue in the blood. The instant I feel touch the right leg is for me the sign that the tennis ball is over the other side. Before I would not bet a euro on my survival.
I'm the only one overwhelmed by a large group, experienced and equipped that can spend, and devotes all his energies to my disseppelimento. Had we finished under many, or we been in a few, who can say how it would go.
A few weeks before I had signed a life insurance policy insisting that he removed a clause relating to the case of death by freezing. Put that end up in an avalanche, I joked with the insurer. Who knows what face he would do!
'Nuff said. The avalanche event, even with all its drama, is not describable in words without falling into banality. I would just put pen to paper the answers to some questions that, for having been asked by several people, think of possible common interest.
I tried to run away? Of course, as soon as I saw the gap, which at first seemed trivial matter, I began to climb the other side with all possible vigor. But a matter of seconds, it is not that the way it can do so much. Maybe during descent you can put egg and groped a free to Hermann Mayer. But uphill, with the foot skins, the range is truly laughable.
I tried to swim, how to suggest to do? No, I tried. Or rather, I could not even think of trying to speculate. The shock wave preceding the avalanche mass has nothing to do with the wind, not even with the Bora at seventy even though I tried to Trieste, years ago, and that made me stagger, it is true, but did not raise me mica ground! After the slap of the blast, with its sprawl landing, it's hard to do anything.
And then the avalanche, avalanche my least (I have no experience of other), has nothing to do with the water. It 's like being inside a giant cement mixer: free style fails badly. The mass envelops you, t'impasta, it dismantles. Already maintain a morphological congruence is an impossible task, coordinating the movements is pure theory. Perhaps it would be worthwhile to take off your skis and curl up to try to save the limbs, but it is said that so we do not end below. However, think of being able to dominate in some way the situation is at least an illusion.
Create me a space, a niche, a bubble of air to breathe? Yes, I tried. But no, I did not succeed. For a moment I thought that I've made. When I stopped. Then came the rest of the snow with her sweet hippo weight. Not only it has recovered all the available space: it is also placed on my sternum making me the complicated breathing regardless air supply.

During the hospital stay was revised as James Stewart, immobilized on a wheelchair in "Rear Window" Hitchcock ...
If you have full knowledge of the above and the below? No not at all. I never said to be virtually upside down. They say they use saliva to his bearings, but this only makes sense if all you have space to do something. When you're stuffed into a concrete pylon it is not that you maidservant much know where the above.
There is light? Yes, I swear it is. Not that there's much to see, but my impression is that the crystals of snow in front of my eyes were visible.
They hear the sounds? Yes, and very well. Even a meter and a half below felt everything that was said outside. Not vice versa, in the sense that they did not feel anything out of what I was screaming. Strange unidirectional effect of sound propagation.
It's cold? Probably yes, but at least in the first few minutes it is the least of the problems. Then yes, a cold beak, but fortunately I was already out.
I walked past all your life? No, frankly, no. The impression is not to have thought of almost nothing. For a while ', perhaps a minute, I believed I was a goner, but there was not much over this far-sighted observation. The blurred image of my wife explaining to children why and for how dad will never come back, with the absurd relief not to be the one to have to. A beginning perhaps of resignation. Then the magic touch to the boot and the immediate certainty that I would make it. From there, all efforts were concentrated on staying calm, to breathe slowly, to consume as little as possible, on staying alive. For the full projection of my life there has not been time.
And finally, back to the mountains after this unique experience? And 'the most difficult answer. They are so far from the minimum physical conditions just to come up to Mount San Primo I do not feel any compulsion, neither return nor retreat. I will want to do, when I can do it, I can not imagine it. It does note that it was an event unprovoked, totally random, real bad luck as they say, and I can not blame no negligence, no gambling. Real thing mostly.
Of course, if I had chosen to leave the traccione and spend more on the left ... well, I would have won the Nobel Prize of premonition, and it is only a matter of conscience that, before the injury, leads me to question the improbable choices that could avoid it. However, perhaps because of this inevitability evaluation disturbs me. Had this happened but, as so often, I assumed I more or less calculated risk, I always think that, with a more prudent course of action, I would be able to increase at will the level of security. If you make a mistake, he says the wise, you can always riprometterti not fall for it anymore. Instead I find myself, as the only consolation to think that a jinx like that can not happen to me twice thing though entirely false, as the calculation of probability teaches.
Fear is a good reason not to go back. Then there are the reasons to go back. The fun. Until now I've always lived the mountain with seriousness but also with lightheartedness. A big, huge, immeasurable fun. Could I have fun as before knowing that at home there is a family that is counting the minutes to the fateful phone call, okay, all right, we are at the machine? Until today my mountain activity was, for my family, merely a problem of absence. Now it could become a major source of stress. In short, we must heal in four of this.
In conclusion, the denouement. How to recite the sacred texts, the probability of survival in an avalanche is more than ninety percent in the first five minutes. Never time was calculated with the judgment. When I see a glove brushing the last layers of snow in front of my face, it's been esattamenti five minutes, and my impression is that I would not hold the sixth. Maybe just a feeling, no one can ever say.

It was on that unforgettable April 25 2007 which was liberated from the clutches of the avalanche.
The immense pleasure of breathing is only partially mitigated by a finger that comes readily inserted through the mouth in search of foreign bodies, as per procedure. It seems that my first request was to rise from the testicles, not figuratively but strictly physical. On the other hand it should not be easy to see how they are positioned, Heather Parisi half and half "Misery." Starting from improbable angles of the lower limbs my testicles could be anywhere, so it is reasonable that someone, totally acceptable in the effort to save my Pellacchia, one is placed above. I see faces of comrades who thought far behind. They will have taken a ski lift, conversely I can not explain how they can be here.
The rest is an archeological excavation waltz, thermal materials, acrobatic helicopter pilots, doctors sans frontiers, stretchers, ambulances, cold, happiness, physical pain like never before. I focus on linda hospital room where, sooner or later, should arrive for a deserved rest in the large dose of painkillers. A mirage for which it takes about four hours, mostly spending to pull me up the temperature from thirty-one to thirty-six and a half regulations. When at last I shoot in the iron heel for traction warn me that will make me a bit 'wrong, but it seems to me little more than an insect bite. Now I have the pain threshold between Rambo and the '' Man Called Horse. " Finally, about four o'clock, the dream come true: they are in a neat hospital room with a pear of hallucinogens from 500cc hanging on the hanger of the drip and not feel any pain. And 'the 25 April, Liberation Day. From quest`anno, for me, not only by the Nazis.
Roberto "Rolly" Cotti

The high mortality rate of accidents in the avalanche in this graph produced by the Italian Snow and Avalanche.
The (rare) good fortune to survive
The avalanche incident has a high mortality rate. If you compare the number of victims over 15 years, even with the dead that you have in Italy in a year on the roads, the comparison appears impractical and even the economic efforts aimed at preventing disproportionate to the scope of the phenomenon. But while each 100 road accidents there are "only" 3 deaths, 100 avalanche accidents cause more than 60 victims. Hence the avalanche accident, with its high mortality rate, takes on a different dimension. Analyzing the mortality rate by asset type are immediately diversity, even if the value is in any case extremely high. In particular, the avalanche accidents involving climbers are extremely dramatic with 1,1 casualties per incident while in the ski mountaineering is the value of 0,6 casualties per incident. In the practice of off-piste skiing, the mortality rate is lower with a value of 0,42. Certainly in skiing off-piste a decisive role in the survival plays the proximity of relief with respect to the activities practiced in high mountain remote areas. Also in the ski areas, in addition to attending to the lifts, skiers can also be of potential viewers of any accidents and this determines, in general, a high probability that the alarm is given promptly and help arrives at the place of 'in a short time accident.
Source: www.aineva.it/pubblica/neve42/valt1.html - (Mountcity No. 18,16.3.2015)
Last edit: 15 / 09 / 2016 13: 50 by Flavio melindo.

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