Vorsicht Dachlawinen!

When we first moved into our flat, we noticed this sign on the front door, but we didn’t pay it much mind. It was summer. And Zürich has been having fairly mild winters the past few year with little snow.

If you can’t see the small print, you can click on the photo to enlarge it, but I’ll save you the effort. It says, “With the big snowfall, the danger for spontaneous fall of avalanches is considerable. ETH buildings are all equipped with snow catchers. The stay in the roof area should however be minimized.” (The ETH translation, not mine.)

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When we returned from Budapest to all the snow, we started paying much more attention to this warning. One day we thought we heard what might have been thunder, but then it occurred to us that a sheet of snow had slid off the steeply-pitched roof.

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I’m not sure just where the snow catchers are, unless they are what we would call gutters. We make sure to minimize the stay in the roof area, though, and walk away from the building immediately upon exiting.

The snow is pretty well gone now, although we are having flakes on and off this week so far, at least up here on the Zürichberg. When we go down the hill, the flakes turn into drips. Nothing sticks right now.

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