Washington State Use TANKS for Avalanche Control

The Washington State Department of Transportation uses several methods to protect drivers from avalanches along US 2 near Stevens Pass, including firing live artillery rounds at unstable snow to trigger avalanches while the roads are clear. Avalanche technicians usually fire the two M60 tanks near the summit at Stevens Pass between midnight and 6 a.m., but on Tuesday, January 09, 2013, WSDOT officials decided that the snow was unstable enough that US 2 needed to be shut down during the afternoon so that avalanche technicians could fire the tanks.

photos and video by Mark Mulligan


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  1. k says:

    Washington State dumps-worthy of the big guns.

  2. Lust for Powder says:

    Squaw needs one of these. But only if KSL is the target.

  3. Anonymous says:

    Dudes, we’re talking heavy duty here !

  4. BoGnar says:

    A M-60 tank uses 105mm rounds.
    Alpine has a Howitzer. That uses a 155mm round.

  5. That Guy says:

    Imagine skiing up on that ridge, just minding your own business when some asshole fires a shell at you.

    • torn edge says:

      Imagine being a bear sleeping up on that ridge….
      m-60 developed in 1960 for the cold war in Germany-Russia;

  6. Rail Tycoon says:

    30 rounds!! hell yeah, Merica.

  7. Master of Puppets says:

    M-60 tank would be my preferred mode of transportation on Powder Day from Truckee to Squaw, you know straight line it

  8. Anonymous says:

    You better be nice to their Ski Patrol :)


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