2020 Was Record Year for Rescues in Swiss Mountains
14th March 2021
Last modified on March 16th, 2021
Despite the pandemic and its restrictions, the Swiss Alpine Club said that 3,471 people had to be assisted after getting into difficulties in the Alps and the Jura mountain ranges.
Half were hikers and the rest were doing sports including ski touring, mountain biking, base jumping, or paragliding.
SAC did say that last year’s lockdown in Spring led to a decrease in accidents specifically related to ski touring.
1,172 were rescued unharmed or with minor injuries.
180 people died.
Foreigners average 40% of the people needing assistance, but last year it was 27% – likely caused by less foreigners in the country due to travel restrictions.
This season has seen an unprecedented number of avalanches, some fatal, due to a highly unstable early season snowpack.
20 people have died in avalanches in Switzerland this season– half of them in January.
It has been a dangerous situation in North America too this winter with the highest number of avalanche fatalities since records began in the USA.