Pascal Haegeli, Joe Obad, Brad Harrison, Brad Murray, Jessica Engblom, Jonathan Neufeld
Proceedings of 2014 International Snow Science Workshop in Banff, AB, 910-917
Publication year: 2014


The Canadian Avalanche Association’s Industry Information Exchange (InfoEx) is a daily exchange of technical snow, weather, avalanche and terrain information among subscribers from all types of avalanche safety operations in Canada. In addition to providing a platform for a candid and timely exchange of observations and assessments to enhance the decision-making context for subscribers, InfoEx is also a data cornerstone for the production of public avalanche bulletins by Avalanche Canada. Historically, InfoEx consisted of daily static, multi-page text reports, initially distributed by fax, later by email and an online portal. Increased information volume and subscriber growth, however, made the text format increasingly inefficient and cumbersome as a risk management tool in a time-pressured environment. In 2012, TECTERRA provided funding to completely redesign InfoEx’s infrastructure and turning it into an explicit geospatial data system. TECTERRA’s investment created a positive, but formidable challenge. This paper describes the principles and design choices taken to create a flexible, expandable InfoEx system that supports the diverse needs of the community, and elaborates on the lessons learned from the community’s transition to new technologies.