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February 11, 2021

Washington State Patrol Pays Tribute to a Trooper Who Died in an Avalanche While Snow Biking

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The Washington State Patrol police have put up a touching tribute in honor of veteran officer Steve Houle who passed on after getting caught in an avalanche. 

The latest update on the official Facebook page of the Washington Patrol Police had them putting up a tribute in honor of Steve Houle, a veteran officer. He lost his life in an avalanche.

Houle was found dead and trapped on Monday in the accumulation of snow that engulfed him while he went snow biking. The late officer was in service for 28 years in the Commercial Vehicle Division of the WSP.  

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The WSP chief, John Batiste, in a statement, described Houle as a great person who was loved and respected by all. Batiste shared that Houle would be remembered for his good works. 

Another Facebook post reported that the incident happened at the French Cabin Creek area, and his snowmobiler was trapped in the avalanche. As it is, Houle and one other person were trapped, but he was not lucky enough to get out. 

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The Kittitas County Sheriff noted in a press release that the 51-year-old was found around 7 PM on the day of the incident and was pronounced dead on the spot. 

On Tuesday, the Colorado Avalanche Information Center (CAIC) made it known that the United States recorded its highest level of avalanches after more than a dozen people died in the disasters. 

Damschroder’s death came after Colorado reported the death of three skiers who died in an avalanche.

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Sadly, Houle was recorded as the 22nd person to have lost his life in an avalanche. With his passing, Washington recorded its first avalanche death. The Northwest avalanche center has warned that the snowpack conditions would get worse. 

Another snow incident happened in Utah, claiming the life of a 57-year-old skier, Kurt Damschroder. The victim had been skiing with a friend when the avalanche launched and covered Damschroder. 

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Reports showed that his friend could dig through and reach him, applying lifesaving measures. However, the avalanche became unbearable, and he had to leave.   

The rescue team could also not get through to Damshcroder on time and had to bring him helicopters to scout the area he was buried in. At the end of the search, he was reported dead.

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The Utah Avalanche Center has recorded 39 deaths since last Saturday, and on Sunday, six additional losses were reported. Damschroder’s death came after Colorado reported the death of three skiers who died in an avalanche.  

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