A video showing the moment a skier spotted a snowboarder buried under snow and then dug him out is going viral.
Frank Zuber was skiing in the Mount Baker Ski Area in Washington on March 3 when he noticed something out of the corner of his eye. Turns out it was an unfortunate snowboarder buried up to his ankles in the snow, which wouldn’t have been that worrying if he wasn’t upside down.
The footage from Zuber’s Go Pro shows him taking his skis off and using his hands to dig deep enough to allow the snowboarder to breathe before completing the job with a shovel from his backpack.
The snowboarder, who has been identified as Ian Steger, would have likely suffocated under the snow had Zuber not spotted him.
“It was enough to make me stop and turn around… I saw that it was a snowboard upside down, wiggling, with obviously someone attached to it,” the latter said to Newsweek.
He said he wasn’t sure how long Steger had been buried but it’s likely to have been several minutes.
“I’ve taken an avalanche certification course… I know that he only has 15 minutes before he suffocates so I knew that I needed to get to him as quick as possible and clear his airway,” Zuber explained.
He posted the video to Instagram late last month and it’s now doing the rounds on Twitter.
“Take an Avy 1 course, and get trained on what to do if you find yourself in this situation,” he advised as part of the caption to the post. “I’m thankful I knew just enough to scrape by and perform a successful rescue. And always look out for each other out there.”
Zuber and Steger have since become friends, with the snowboarder showing appreciation by taking his rescuer and his wife out to dinner.
The new buddies returned to Mount Baker together this past weekend, with Steger sharing a post in which he thanked Francis for saving his life.
“Grateful to be back on the mountain and to get a day in with my new brother @franciszuber,” he wrote. “There are no words to express the gratitude that @hanahoumassage and I have for you. Thanks for saving my life.”WANT MORE FROM TOTALPROSPORTS? FOLLOW US ON GOOGLE NEWS.