As of March 1, avalanches have killed 23 people in the United States this winter. This is the second largest number of cumulative fatalities through February since the winter of 2000-01. Unlike January 2016, the six avalanche deaths in February 2016 were typical for the month (median 6). Typically, about 60% of avalanche fatalities for the winter have occurred by March 1. Projecting forward, 2015-16 could be one of the worst winters for avalanche deaths in recent years. This is a rough estimate, and how the snowpack evolves over the next few months will determine the number of serious avalanche accidents.
The chart below shows cumulative fatalities by month for avalanche years 2001 through 2015 in gray. Median, first, and third quartiles are shown in blue. The cumulative fatalities for 2016 are in red. Mouse over the chart for monthly values.