MND, n°1 worldwide in avalanche risk prevention and control via its business line MND SAFETY, with its Georgian partner Mountain Resorts Solutions (MRS) have deployed the first ever avalanche risk control systems within a Georgian ski area. Operational since this fall, this large-scale project is already a reference in the region and allows Mountain Resort Development Company (MRDC), the Georgian state-owned company that manages the operation of the Gudauri, Bakuriani, Mestia, and Goderdzi resorts, to benefit from explosive-free systems and controllable remotely.
The Gudauri ski resort, the largest ski area in the Caucasus Mountains, has chosen "Made in France" technologies and equipment to prevent and secure avalanche risks – a first in Georgia. Located at an altitude of more than 2,000 meters, the resort is equipped with 24 Gazex, 10 shelters / mini-shelters, 1 DaisyBell and a new generation of global monitoring system, including 1 weather station and 1 infrasonic detection network, to continuously analyze and monitor the site in real-time. Since the beginning of the season, the 20 installed fixed systems have allowed to carry out 3 avalanche control days to secure the resort which, although closed to skiers, guarantees a secondary connection between Kobi and Gudauri.
MND SAFETY systems use a technology based on an explosion of mixed gases and are remotely controlled to allow a total safety to the operators working on the field. This is the only system worldwide that do not require the transportation, storage and manipulation of explosives, therefore eliminating the need to handle explosive charges as well as eliminating human intervention in the secured avalanche area. Very quick to implement, they can be operated at all times, in any type of weather, generating one or more powerful explosions above the snowpack and without environmental impact contrary to all explosive solutions. These features, both in terms of safety and the environment, are what convinced the managers of this high mountain Georgian site.
The equipment installation and MRDC team training have been provided by the group of companies comprising MND SAFETY and its local partner MRS.
Irakli Chirakadze, General Manager of MRDC, declared: “We wanted the most efficient solution to secure our ski area. The systems offered by MND SAFETY enable rapid and completely safe intervention, regardless of the weather and is respectful of the nature. They are equipped with the last modern technology that guarantees our employees’ safety and permanent system availability in a high-risk area. This is a first in Georgia.”
Sergo Shugarov, Chairman and CEO of MRS, declared: "Thanks to the French know-how of MND Safety, we have been able to provide a global answer to manage the avalanche safety of Gudauri and this in record completion times for such a site. Other touristic sites as well as road infrastructures could benefit from these explosive-free solutions in order to control the avalanche risk. "
MND SAFETY’s avalanche risk prevention and control systems are present on the snow- covered slopes of more than 22 countries – Russia, United States, Italy, etc. – in order to prevent the avalanche risk in ski areas and over roads, railways, mines or industrial sites. To date, this is the most used solutions with nearly 3,000 systems which are in operation to anticipate and control avalanche risks without handling explosives. These French solutions are unique in the world and are protected by numerous patents.
Located at an altitude of 2,196 m, Gudauri is one of the main ski resorts in Georgia. Distant from only 110 kilometers from Tbilisi, the capital of the country, on the international road to Russia. Gudauri is the most accessible ski resort in Georgia and the one with the biggest frequentation. Its internationally renowned ski area has 18 ski lifts and rises to an altitude of 3,278 meters.
Mountain Resorts Development Company Ltd was founded in 2013 by the LEPL National Agency for State Property subordinated to the Ministry of Economy and Sustainable Development of Georgia. The company operated as Gudauri Development Agency Ltd till 2014 and managed the mountain ski resort of Gudauri. By the decision of the Ministry of Economy and Sustainable Development of Georgia, Bakuriani resort area – Didveli and Goderdzi ski resort were transferred to the company for the management in 2014 and 2015 respectively.
By 2017, Mountain Resorts Development Company Ltd, manages the following resorts: Gudauri, Bakuriani (Kokhta, Mitarbi, Didveli), Goderzi, Hatsvali and Tetnuldi (Mestia). More information at: www.mrg.gov.ge
Mountain Resort Solutions is the first ISO certified company in Georgia for Management of Infrastructural Projects such as Construction, Installation and Maintenance of: ski and urban cableways and lifts; artificial snow-making systems; natural hazard prevention systems; ski resorts special machinery for snow grooming and safety.
Starting from 2017, MRS is the most rapidly growing company in Georgia with unique portfolio, which provides high quality products and solutions for mountain resorts development.