Informed Consent

By filling out this survey, you are consenting to participate in our research. Your participation in this survey is voluntary, and you may choose not to respond to any question or terminate the survey at any time. It is not possible for participants to withdraw previously submitted responses, but the responses of participants who do not complete the survey will be destroyed prior to analysis.

Taking part in this study is considered low risk as the research does not expose participants to any known or unforeseeable risks. Your responses will be analyzed in aggregate, and you will not be identifiable in any publications or presentations. Consenting to participate in research does not waive any rights to legal recourse in the event of research-related harm.

The study is conducted by the Avalanche Research Program at Simon Fraser University (SFU) as part of Eeva Latosuo’s doctoral research in collaboration with the U.S. National Science Foundation National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) and with financial support from the Colorado Avalanche Information Center (CAIC). All information you provide in this survey will be confidentially stored and maintained by SFU’s research team in a secure custom-built database in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. To further protect your privacy, the identifying information (preferred name and email address) will be stored encrypted.

Your answers will provide critical information for improving avalanche safety messages in North America. The data collected in this survey will be stored for 15 years to facilitate studies over time about the effectiveness of avalanche safety information products and services under the leadership of the SFU research team. Note that your information will never be shared outside of the CAIC, the Friends of the CAIC, and the research teams at SFU and NCAR.

The winter backcountry activities mentioned in this survey involve serious risks that can lead to severe injuries and/or death. Note that being associated with these activities might negatively affect your insurance benefits (e.g., travel insurance).

For any questions regarding this study, please contact Dr. Pascal Haegeli, NSERC Industrial Research Chair in Avalanche Risk Management, at or 778-782-3579. If you have any concerns about your rights as a research participant and/or your experiences while participating in this study, you may contact the SFU Office of Research Ethics at or 778-782-6618.

Background photo credit: Jake Hutchinson