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The Avalanche (Skredet)
2024 Finalist

The Avalanche (Skredet)

Bladet Nordlys

Tromsø, Norway

Category Newsroom Development

Media associated with this campaign

Overview of this campaign

"The Avalanche" is a groundbreaking visual story, crafted from extensive data collected from a specific avalanche in Norway's Lyngen Alps.


Our bespoke visualization comprises an animated depiction of the avalanche, blending various elements: a drone video from the rescue operation, detailed maps, our own drone footage (captured using DJI Mavic 3) post-accident, audio, timely photos and videos from the incident, accurate GPS locations of the five individuals found, their chosen route that day, and the exact spots where they conducted snowpit tests for avalanche risk and beacon checks. The snow's speed and volume were calculated using a globally recognized formula, supplemented by insights from NVE engineer Aron Widforss, who adjusted for local conditions like snow interaction with trees and mountain topography.


Our visualizations, primarily created using Adobe and Vimeo, unravel the buildup of dangerous snow layers weeks before the avalanche, pinpointing the cause of the accident. This aspect integrates historical meteorological data (including snowfall, wind, and temperature) with clear, visual representations of the evolving snowpack and a dynamic timeline.


Additionally, we've crafted an interactive graphic depicting deaths and injuries, based on our data and using Flourish.


For the comprehensive integration of these elements, we employed VEV Design and engaged two professionals. VEV's templates enhance visual storytelling, allowing the incorporation of our animations and graphics. For instance, the ticking clock feature was created using a VEV template combined with our data.


We've also developed a unique color palette, inspired by photographs taken on the day of the accident. This palette, with its various shades of white, grey, blue, and black, is strategically used behind text segments to accentuate the drama or to provide calm in different story segments.


This visualization permeates the entire narrative, culminating with the transformation of our Nordlys logo into a mountain.

Results for this campaign

This story stands as one of the most widely read in Nordlys' history, garnering significant attention and sparking both regional and national debates. The average reading time exceeds seven minutes.


The story has been featured across a broad spectrum of over 100 titles within the Amedia corporation, encompassing both regional and national newspapers.


Recently, we have received accolades at both regional and national levels. Additionally, we have been invited to nominate and discuss “the story behind the story” at SKUP, the foremost national journalism event, scheduled for April 2024.


This piece has redefined Amedia's approach to visual storytelling. Never before has a story incorporated such a diverse array of tools. Without a dedicated publishing system for this story type, we utilized VEV Design for its presentation. This has prompted internal efforts to enhance our visual storytelling capabilities.


The development of this story involved extensive collaboration within Amedia, engaging various newspapers, the advertising department, and the content marketing department. The latter two, with their unique visualization expertise not present in the editorial office, offered services that significantly enhanced our reporting.


The incident has transformed avalanche rescue operations in Northern Norway, where such accidents are most frequent.


The story now plays a role in establishing a new national avalanche center, contributing to the development of multilingual information materials and push notifications. In this context, “The Avalanche” could become either a magazine for skiers or a simple QR code.


Our report highlighted the lack of awareness among foreign tourists regarding notification services. Moreover, only portions of the avalanche risk assessments in the Varsom app are available in English. A subsequent story revealed that 105 diverse organizations, including businesses, national authorities, and rescue services, have pledged to collaborate to reduce avalanche fatalities.


Following our story, NVE launched a new national campaign targeted at foreign tourists, emphasizing the dangers of avalanches.


Lastly, this experience has transformed our newspaper's approach to covering avalanche incidents, prioritizing initial contacts and fostering improved collaboration with rescue services.



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