Wednesday April 17, 2024

Reason still unknown as probe into Lapland avalanche deaths ends

Published : 03 Apr 2024, 03:52

Updated : 03 Apr 2024, 03:56

  DF Report
Photo: Lapland Police.

The Lapland police concluded the investigation into the deaths of a mother and her child in an avalanche at Pallastunturi in Lapland in early January, said police in a press release on Tuesday.

The police, however, did not find the exact reason behind the incident.

“In the investigation, the police had not the opportunity to find out the exact reason behind the deaths of the mother and son in the avalanche area,” lead investigator Kirsi Huhtamäki of Lapland police said, adding that but based on the investigations, the police presented possible causes of the accident.

The GPS tracking records said that the hikers took a short break before undertaking a 90 degree deviation from the track.

Police also said that the woman made an emergency phone call at 2:09 pm from about 400m off the Hetta-Pallas summer route.

GPS records the location of the hiker about 50-70 metres from the starting point of ​​the avalanche that time but the victims were caught in the fatal snowslide just after the stipulated distance.

The reason for turning away from the track also could not be known but the wind direction might have been pursuing equipment that had blown away or possibly seeking shelter lower down the fells.

Police also said that the skiers were well-equipped and warmly dressed. The mother had a phone, a GPS locator and a paper map.

Both GPS and phone were charged and the mother also had several power backup equipment with her.

Police said that the actual steepness and shape of the slope had been difficult to observe from the GPS mapping device.

A child and his mother died in an avalanche amidst severe cold weather at Pallastunturi in Muonio, a municipality in northern Finland on January 2.