Avalanche risk prompts voluntary evacuation order at Mt. Charles - FOX5 Vegas - KVVU

Avalanche risk prompts voluntary evacuation order at Mt. Charleston

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The risk of an avalanche prompted Clark County to issue a voluntary evacuation a Mt. Charleston. (Source: Clark County) The risk of an avalanche prompted Clark County to issue a voluntary evacuation a Mt. Charleston. (Source: Clark County)
MT. CHARLESON (FOX5) -

People residing and visiting the Kyle and Lee canyons areas of Mt. Charleston were advised Tuesday of the risk of avalanches due to the recent heavy snowfall.

Clark County issued a voluntary evacuation notice for those areas.

According to the county, the Kyle Canyon Fire Station reported 58 inches of snow since last Wednesday. In addition, the Lee Canyon ski area reported a depth of 94 inches of snow as of Monday.

Citing the U.S. Forest Service, Clark County explained any terrain with a slope steeper than 30 degrees may be prone to avalanches. The potentially deadly occurrences can be triggered by the presence of people, new snow or wind.

With that, Clark County advised of warning signs of unstable snow and possible avalanches:

  • You see an avalanche happen or see evidence of previous slides.
  • Cracks form in the snow around your feet or skis.
  • The ground feels hollow underfoot.
  • You hear a "whumping" sound as you walk, which indicates that the snow is settling and a slab might release.
  • Significant warming or rapidly increasing temperatures.

Local authorities are monitoring the mountain. In addition, motorists were advised to anticipate traffic closures at State Routes 156, 157 and 158 as a precaution.

People can get information of driving conditions, chain requirements and road closures ahead of heading up the mountain by dialing 511 or 1-877-687-6237. That information can also be found at this link.

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