Worst Avalanches in XXI Century
We have compiled a list of the ten deadliest avalanches in the world since 2000. Four cases have occurred in Nepal, three in Afghanistan, two in Pakistan, and one in Turkey.
Afghanistan, 310 Avalanche Deaths
On February 24-28, 2015, the worst avalanche in history since 2000 killed 310 people in the northeastern provinces of Afghanistan. Heavy snowfalls led to a series of incidents in more than half of the country’s provinces.
The Province Panjer suffered most of all from avalanches where 168 people were lost. Dozens of residential buildings were destroyed.
Afghanistan, 201 Avalanche Deaths
A famous avalanche strike in Badakhshan province in northeastern Afghanistan killed 56 and left 145 people missing on March 4, 2012. Snow mass covered a remote village with up to 24 families.
Rescuers were able to get to the scene only two days later. Four of the victims were evacuated and treated in neighboring Tajikistan.
The avalanche was preceded by several days of heavy snowfall.
Afghanistan, 172 Avalanche Deaths
On February 9, 2010, a series of avalanches killed 170 people at the Salang Pass, which links Kabul to the northern city of Mazar-e-Sharif. The avalanches hit a mountain serpentine almost 4 km long, and about 3,000 people were blocked on the mountain routes.
The avalanches were aided by Afghan army units, military helicopters delivering food and tents. The rescue work was severely hampered by weather conditions – cold, wind, and snow.
The rubble was cleared by mid-February 2010.
Pakistan, 147 Avalanche Deaths
On February 17, 2010, as a result of an avalanche in the village of Barago Serai (Kohistan district, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province in north-west Pakistan), 102 people were killed, and 45 others went missing.
The cause of the emergency was heavy rainfall.
Pakistan, 138 Avalanche Deaths
A powerful avalanche on the Siachen glacier (the Himalayas, 6,000 m high, India-Pakistan border) caused by a blizzard on April 7, 2012, descended to the Pakistan border guard forces’ Gayari base.
The emergency killed all 138 Pakistani servicemen who were serving at the base.
Nepal, 43 Avalanche Deaths
On October 14, 2014, a strong snowstorm caused avalanches in Annapurna mountain massif (Nepal). As a result, 43 people were killed, including 19 tourists – citizens of Canada, Israel, Poland, Slovakia, India, and Vietnam. According to police data, a total of 385 people were evacuated from the zone of emergency.
Hurricane wind with snow in the Annapurna mountain range was connected by meteorologists with cyclones, which passed from India through Nepal to China.
Nepal, 24 Avalanche Deaths
On April 25, 2015, 24 climbers (including citizens of the USA, China, Australia, and Japan) were killed on Mount Everest during avalanches in Nepal, and about 60 people were injured. The cause of the emergency was the earthquake with magnitude 7.9, which occurred in the central part of Nepal and caused a total of 8 thousand 964 people.
Nepal, 16 Avalanche Deaths
On April 18, 2014, on Everest, an avalanche covered a group of 25 sherpas, 16 of whom were killed. As the avalanche descended, they were lifting their mountaineering equipment to one of the tent camps.
Turkey, 11 Avalanche Deaths
January 25, 2009, in the area of the ski resort “Zigana Dagi” in the northeastern Turkish province of Gyumushane, an avalanche covered a group of members of the club mountaineers and skiers of Trabzon. As a result, 11 people were killed, and three were injured. The avalanche was caused by natural causes.
Nepal, 11 Avalanche Deaths
On September 23, 2012, in the area of Manaslu mountain massif (Himalayas, Nepal), an avalanche hit the camp of the international expedition. 11 climbers – citizens of France, Canada, Spain, Italy, Nepal, and Germany were killed. Two more members of the expedition were injured and were hospitalized in Kathmandu.