With the increase in media attention around local avalanche accidents in the Pacific Northwest in the 2011-2013 winter seasons, a new public outreach campaign was needed for back country entrance areas. In cooperation with King County Search and Rescue, Northwest Weather and Avalanche Center, the US Forest Service, Washington State Department of Transportation, and the Summit at Snoqualmie Ski Resort, and others in the snow science industry, we launched our first pilot of new avalanche awareness signs. These new “Are You Beeping?” beacon check stations includes simple public information, a solar powered BCA Beacon Checker™, trail beam and motion sensors, instrumentation for temperature/humidity, Zigbee wireless mesh capabilities, and a micro-controller for logging of all data to the cloud and the Northwest Avalanche Center for tracking. The first three seasons of data from the pilot was retrieved successfully from the logs showing the public entering a trail head, triggering the beacon checker (if they were wearing a beacon), proceeding further up the trail head, along with time, date, temperature, and humidity. Future capabilities include Recco™ and cellular sensors for additional analysis are being added in the upcoming winter season.
The sign is currently Patent Pending. Please contact us for more information.
Local News coverage of the new beacon check station: