Why scientists are starting avalanches on purpose

This avalanche was set off on purpose

Locator: Stryn, Norway

Scientists conducted a full-scale experiment

to understand how powerful avalanches can be

and improve planning safety measures of infrastructure and buildings

(SOUNDBITE)(English) PRINCIPAL ENGINEER, AVALANCHES AND ROCK SLIDES AT NGI, PETER GAUER, SAYING:"We want to gain more in-depth insight in avalanche dynamics and pressure and forces that we can expect from avalanches and so in this way to validate our models and give practitioners values for dimensioning of objects in an avalanche path."

Scientists set off the avalanche using explosives

causing over 10,000 cubic meters of snow to rumble down the mountain

at a speed of up to 112 miles per hour