As the popularity of winter outdoor sports is increasing, a growing number of users are engaging in activities in uncontrolled terrain, thus training for avalanche rescue is more important than ever. Traditional training takes place through workshops and in field sessions, presenting limitations to the training availability, since they require time, organization and specific weather conditions. This is problematic since the use of transceivers to locate buried individuals is not trivial and requires practice. Virtual Reality (VR) training has shown to be effective in several fields, especially in the context of hazardous conditions and emergencies, which require decision making under time pressure and management of complex tools in uncontrolled or unsafe environments. Examples include disaster medicine, military operations, and other fields in which actions must be performed precisely in short time frame. In this work, we present the development of an immersive VR system for avalanche rescue training as a complementary tool to the traditional techniques in order to prepare the trainee for field training sessions. We discuss the definition of the system requirements, the design and implementation of the tool, and considerations regarding hardware and software. Finally, we discuss possible limitations and future development.

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