Snow slab avalanches are released following anticrack propagation in highly porous weak snow layers buried below cohesive slabs. The volumetric collapse of the weak layer leads to the closure of crack faces followed by the onset of frictional contact. Here on the basis of snow fracture experiments, full-scale avalanche measurements, and numerical simulations, we report the existence of a transition from sub-Rayleigh anticrack to supershear crack propagation involving the Burridge-Andrews mechanism. Remarkably, this transition occurs even if the shear-to-normal stress ratio is lower than the static friction coefficient as a result of the loss of frictional resistance during collapse. This finding represents a new paradigm in our understanding of snow slab avalanches presenting fundamental similarities with strike-slip earthquakes.