Urban avalanche advisory available

Posted: Sunday, January 11, 2009

JUNEAU - The city of Juneau posted its urban avalanche advisory Friday.

It's the second year an advisory is available for residents who live in avalanche paths north of downtown. About 60 homes, a boat harbor, a hotel and a major highway sit in avalanche paths below Mount Juneau.

The program launched with a danger rating of "considerable" on Friday, due to the rapid accumulation of snow during the previous 12 hours and with more snow on the way. The danger rating remained the same Saturday.

The city set up the program this year, hiring full-time forecaster Tom Mattice to do advisories, which are available at www.juneau.org/avalanche. Residents can find danger rating descriptions, maps and other information on the site, as well as subscribe to the advisory.

The program was first available during the 2006-07 winter, when it was run by a local nonprofit. Advisories were not available last year because the Juneau Assembly could not agree on a price.

Advisories will be updated daily before 7 a.m., Mattice said. The advisory can be found at www.juneau.org.

For more information, contact avalanche specialist Tom Mattice at 586-0419 or e-mail Tom_Mattice@ci.juneau.ak.us.

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