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Avalanches Map

Known Avalanches
Betts Cove
09 Feb 1877
Deaths:6
Injuries:0
Overwhelmed 2 houses containing 34 persons. Five killed instantly and 1 fatally injured.
Betts Cove
26 Jan 1884
Deaths:1
Injuries:0
Sergeant J. Fennessey was killed in an avalanche while completing his rounds of the Betts Cove mine. He was found in a gulch beneath the lower part of the tramway at the mine.
Blanc Sablon, Québec
10 Mar 1995
Deaths:2
Injuries:1
Tony Lavallee, aged 32 and his 17-year-old son Jamie were killed in an avalanche. Result of a severe snowstorm that dumped 70 cm over a three day period. Tons of snow slid down a hill and destroyed their home, killing two and trapping Mrs. Lavallee for 6 hours under 7 m of snow. Rescuers followed the screams of the woman where they found her suffering from shock and frost bitten feet.
Bluff Head Brook, West Coast, Chromite Mine
23 Jan 1884
Deaths:4
Injuries:0
Killed were Thomas Holden, Patric Byrne, a Mr. Laughlin and a Mr. McKinnon. The men were cutting a path across the foot of a snow bank to gain access to the west side of the brook, where they were looking for asbestos, when struck by an avalanche and swept over a 100 m embankment. A Mr. Hicks traveling with the party was not injured.
Capstan Island, Labrador
10 Mar 1995
Deaths:0
Injuries:0
Avalanche missed a home by 15 m.
Carbonear
24 May 1833
Deaths:1
Injuries:0
Richard Penny, 20 years old, was collecting boughs on the south side of the harbour when a chunk of ice fell from the cliffs above and struck him on the head, killing him instantly.
Corner Brook, Curling Road
04 Mar 1935
Deaths:3
Injuries:0
House 15 m upslope of Curling Road. Mrs. Blanche Diamond and one child killed instantly. Another child died in hospital. Snowslide moved 2-storey house 10 m downslope until it crashed into another home. Avalanche started 90 m above house.
Corner Brook, Quarry Hill
04 Feb 1938
Deaths:0
Injuries:0
Snowslide wrecked garage. Started 100 m up eastern slope of Quarry Hill during heavy snowstorm. Crossed highroad and wrecked garage owned by George Allan. Hit four houses but no damage reported.
Corner Brook, Quarry Hill
21 Jan 1943
Deaths:0
Injuries:1
Mr. Hugh Cook, wife and 5 children had house damaged. Chimney fell through roof into children's bedroom. Mrs. Cook injured. Back of house smashed in by weight of snow. House stopped by electrical wires, otherwise house would have fallen over cliff to Crow Gulch. House owned by Mr. Harry Barnes covered by snow. House owned by Mrs. Herbert Wheeler and her 5 children also damaged.
Curling
07 Feb 1986
Deaths:1
Injuries:0
David Pike was killed in an avalanche on Monument Hill. Two young boys (David Pike and Jeffery Soper) were sliding or jumping in the snow on a steep slope on the east side of the hill when the snow gave way and buried them. Jeffery Soper was able to dig himself out and run for help. David Pike was found 1.5 hours later beneath 2 m of snow.
Distress Cove, Placentia Bay
12 Mar 1863
Deaths:2
Injuries:0
John and William Foley smothered in avalanche while duck shooting.
Exploits
04 Mar 1935
Deaths:0
Injuries:0
The house of George Jacobs was partly destroyed by snowslide, and his barn was blown into the harbour but later salvaged. Snow fall was to a height of 7 m.
Foots Cove, Burin Peninsula
12 Mar 1907
Deaths:?
Injuries:2
Two houses at the base of a 100 m cliff were completely buried. Seven in one house dug out unharmed, William Mayo and wife badly burned in other, as trapped under wood stove. Not clear from follow-up reports if Mayo died, but likely recovered.
Griquet, Northern Peninsula
06 Feb 1962
Deaths:1
Injuries:0
Ruby Hillier, aged 10, was killed by snow slide at 3:30 p.m.
Okak, Labrador
01 Mar 1935
Deaths:2
Injuries:11
A great mass of snow rolled down slope and went through one end of the house and out the other. Killed Ida Kohlmeister and Karoline Uvloriak.
Petty Harbour, Avalon Peninsula
17 Feb 1921
Deaths:0
Injuries:0
Avalanche destroyed 20 m of the water flume (artificial channel) to the Petty Harbour electric generating plant, resulting in the loss of power for four days in St. John's.
Port aux Basques, High Street (off Caribou Road)
14 Mar 1997
Deaths:0
Injuries:0
Avalanche followed a night of heavy snowfall, and high winds. The avalanche filled a parking lot to a depth of 2-3 m, over an area of 45 m by 12 m. A home for handicapped children, adjacent to the lot, lost the deck and wheelchair ramp. A youth, shoveling snow on the deck, was able to escape burial. A car parked by the house was swept across the road. The town manager recalled that a similar incident had occurred about 25 years ago in the same area.
Rapid Pond, or Little Rapids
02 Jan 1922
Deaths:0
Injuries:0
Avalanche derailed train. Baggage car swept from track into pond. Engine had passed and was undamaged. Forty people on train but no one was hurt.
St. John's, Battery
07 Feb 1921
Deaths:0
Injuries:3
Several hundred tons of snow demolished the house of Alfred Wells in the Lower Battery. He, his wife and their 2-year-old son were injured. Houses owned by Rogers, Morris, Edgecombe and Pearcey were also destroyed or damaged.
St. John's, Signal Hill
17 Feb 1921
Deaths:1
Injuries:0
James Delahunty suffocated by avalanche directly below his house on Signal Hill. His hold on a dinner pail had not relaxed when death overtook him.
St. John's, The Battery
16 Feb 1959
Deaths:5
Injuries:?
Two avalanches occurred in the Outer Battery during a snow storm that dumped 55 cm of snow on the city, accompanied by winds up to 220 km/hr. A first avalanche buried the Garland family in their home, but all survived. The main avalanche was at 1:05 a.m. It destroyed two homes and damaged many others, and resulted in the deaths of five people and injury to at least nine others. Included in the dead was 100-year-old Isaiah Dawe.
St. John's, Lower Battery
13 Mar 1960
Deaths:0
Injuries:0
Lower Battery snow slide forced Cyril Garland and family to leave their home after it was hit. Area residents left the Battery in anticipation of a larger avalanche. They returned to their homes several days later after the threat had passed.
Seal Island, Humber River (likely Shellbird Island)
31 Dec 1917
Deaths:1
Injuries:0
Joshua Peddle, section foreman at Humbermouth, was killed as snow swept down mountainside into river.
Shellbird Island, Humber River
02 May 1952
Deaths:0
Injuries:0
Small avalanche blocked rail line. No damage reported, but train was forced to return to Deer Lake.
Shellbird Island, Humber River
02 Apr 1953
Deaths:0
Injuries:0
Railway line blocked by ice which had fallen from the cliffs at quarry. Railway line and roadway blocked. Incident reported to repeat itself every year.
Tilt Cove, Baie Verte Peninsula
11 Mar 1912
Deaths:5
Injuries:0
Avalanche killed mine manager (Williams), his 13-year-old son, and Peter and Francis Sage (servants). Two houses destroyed. Fifth victim a servant believed to have died later from burns sustained as a result of a fire caused by the avalanche. Houses were situated at base of steep cliff at head of the pond. Many said houses dangerously placed, though the owners thought otherwise and made light of such an accident happening. Williams' wife and 2 daughters escaped.
Western Cove near St. Carols, Great Northern Peninsula
07 Mar 1995
Deaths:0
Injuries:1
Travis Taylor, 16 years old, was climbing up a snow covered hill, 10 m high when he felt the snow let go. He was carried down the hill under the snow but managed to push his fingers to the surface before he blacked out. His girlfriend watching from nearby saw his fingers and was able to dig him out and revive him.
York Harbour, Bay of Islands
13 Feb 1905
Deaths:0
Injuries:2
Buried 2 men, Thomas Burton, chief engineer and James Flynn second engineer - both from the mine. Dug out and took 3-4 days off work.

Reproduced by permission of M. Batterson, D.G.E. Liverman, J. Ryan and D. Taylor, The Assessment of Geological Hazards and Disasters in Newfoundland: An Update. (St. John's: Government of Newfoundland and Labrador, Department of Mines and Energy, Geological Survey, © 1999). Map adapted by Don Walsh and Tina Riche, 2000.

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Natural Environment - Table of Contents Site Map Search Heritage Web Site Home Carbonear Distress Cove Betts Cove Bluff Head Brook York Harbour Foots Cove Tilt Cove Shellbird Island Battery, St. John's Signal Hill, St. John's Petty Harbour Rapid Pond Okak Corner Brook Exploits Corner Brook Battery, St. John's Lower Battery, St. John's Griquet Curling Western Cove Blanc Sablon Capstan Island Port aux Basques