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Emergencies Ministry tests Daisy Bell anti-avalanche system

13.12.2013 /

The Daisy Bell avalanche control system has, for the first time in Russia, been tested with the Mi-8/17 helicopter.

Mi-8/17 helicopter search and rescue crews from the Far East District Emergencies Ministry regional centre tested the Daisy Bell mobile anti-avalanche system in the Kholmsky region. Crews from the Primorye, Khabarovsk, and Kamchatka Territories, alongside a search and rescue crew from Sakhalin also took part in the training session.

“This system makes it possible to respond rapidly in dealing with slopes that pose a high avalanche risk and threaten highways, railways, and in some cases even populated areas: providing comprehensive avalanche protection. Reaction speed is significantly faster than with conventional approaches such as trimming or using explosives,” said Sakhalin Region Emergencies Ministry chief Alexei Murzin.

The Daisy Bell system was acquired using Russian Railways funds in 2011, this is the first time it has been tested on the Mi-8. In 2010, it was tested on the Ka-32 in Krasnaya Polyana, Krasnodar Territory.

The Daisy Bell mobile anti-avalanche system comprises a metal cone that is attached by rope to a helicopter. Targeted blasts of an oxygen-hydrogen mixture are pumped out through the cone, by remote control 3-5 metres above the snow. The cone is made of high-strength steel so it can hold the gas until it is ignited and blasted at the snow.

Helicopter crews worked in relay completing 13 flights, hitting the slopes with 26 blasts from the Daisy Bell system.

All teams completed the trials successfully, and are getting ready for the next phase of work to clear slopes that pose a high avalanche risk using the Daisy Bell system, the Sakhalin Region Emergencies Ministry press service said.   

Tags: Mi-8/17
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