April 28, 2004

Army Wants Howitzers Back From Ski Areas

From Yahoo/AP: bq. The U.S. military is demanding the return of five howitzers that two Sierra Nevada ski resorts use to prevent avalanches, saying it needs the guns for the fighting in Iraq and Afghanistan. bq. Alpine Meadows and Mammoth Mountain received the artillery pieces on loan from the Army and began using them last year to fire rounds into mountainsides and knock snow loose. bq. But the ski resorts received word earlier this month that the Army's Tank Automotive and Armaments Command at the Rock Island Arsenal in Illinois needs the howitzers back immediately. bq. "I need to have them back in the troops' hands within 60 to 90 days," said Don Bowen, the Army command's team leader in charge of the howitzers. "It's a very short timeframe to get them serviceable and back into the theater in southwest Asia. Afghanistan-Iraq is the immediate concern." bq. The ski resorts said they will comply. Howitzers and canons are used in Washington state too for avalance control. Works out to be the best way possible - trigger them under controlled conditions and relieve the potential danger. Posted by DaveH at April 28, 2004 1:19 PM