Two Deadly Avalanches Hit Ski Resorts Near Seattle

For our sanity's sake, we prefer to think that deadly avalanches only happen on remote mountains on the other side of the world. But really they can happen anywhere, as people in Washington state sadly learned today. Earlier this afternoon, an avalanche occurred in the Cascade Mountains northeast of Seattle and killed three people. It happened at the Stevens Pass ski area, in an out-of-bounds section near the popular resort. Initially, eight additional people were reported missing, but it now seems that they've been accounted for. As if that's not bad enough, a snowboarder at another resort outside of Seattle was also killed in a separate avalanche which swept him over a cliff. It was apparently a high-risk time for avalanches, since the weather was relatively warm and a lot of new snow had fallen overnight. Quite a scary and tragic day in the Pacific Northwest.

3 dead, up to 8 missing in Washington avalanche [Boston Globe]
Four dead in Washington state avalanches [Reuters]

Image via Lee Chamberlin/Shutterstock.