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Avalanche beacon recommended for skiers

January 25, 2008 12:00:00 AM PST
The skier who died in an avalanche on Friday was wearing an avalanche beacon. It's a device recommended for skiers and hikers who venture into the backcountry.Two people must carry the beacons in order for the technology to work. If one person becomes trapped under heavy snow, the beacon will send out a signal to the person above the snow.

"What it is are radio waves that go out in kind of a half-circular motion, and the transceiver will actually beep as you get closer," said REI salesperson Erik Godfrey.

Beacons cost about $200.

Also recommended -- a shovel, first-aid kit, food, water and warm clothing.