2 snowboarders named Tylor Williams and Nathan Fisher started out as a perfect day of snowboarding but it turned out into a disaster when one of them was caught in an avalanche. The incident happened on a remote area at Silver Star Mountain Resort at Vernon, British Columbia.
Saving a life
According to Williams, they had just started on their first run of the day on the Alder Point on the back side of the Silver Star Mountain Resort. He saw snow on the slope ahead of them starting to move down. Everything was so fast and very scary. The snow moved down very fast in uncontrolled directions towards Fisher. The snow pushed Fisher further down the sides of the run and toward trees.
Williams rode down the slope to where his friend disappeared and called out his name. He unstrapped from his board and run through sticks and dirt until the edge of the peak. There he finally found Fisher, lying on the slope with his feet uphill and his head in downward position against a tree. He was partially covered in snow. He immediately helped his friend and provided initial first aid on him.
Fisher was conscious when he was found by Williams. Williams recalled that he remembers his friend saying over and over, ‘Ty, for the help. The jaw of Fisher was severely smashed and there was a hole in his throat. William was scared because it produces a garbled sound when he talks. Then Williams tried to undo binding on Fisher which had been torn from the snowboard. He has difficulty unstrapping his friend from the snowboard; the leg of Fisher was wrapped around a tree at an uncomfortable position.
Williams used his tuque or knitted stocking cap and wrapped it around the throat of Fisher and applying a gentle pressure to lessen the bleeding. Williams called several times the emergency numbers. He shouted for help as loud as he could. Finally, someone answered from a distance. A ski patrol was on their way already. While waiting for the ambulance, he kept Fisher conscious and makes him focus on breathing. He prevented Fisher from looking at his body and the blood.
Finally, the paramedics arrived took over from Williams. They continued providing first aid and getting him ready to be brought to the hospital. Fisher had broken ribs, a broken ankle, and deep lacerations on his throat, a dislocated hip. He did not have any spinal or head injuries. Fisher is now recovering at the Kelowna General Hospital.
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