Home » One killed, eight injured in Dry Gulch MVA

Posted: August 15, 2016

One killed, eight injured in Dry Gulch MVA

A 59-year-old woman was killed and eight other people injured in a two-vehicle accident on Highway 93/95 at Dry Gulch at 11:40 a.m. yesterday morning (August 14).

rcmp logo glossyEast Kootenay Traffic Services RCMP Sgt. Don Erichsen reported the accident occurred when the driver of a southbound Rav4, carrying six people, failed to respond to changing conditions during the heavy Sunday commute out of the valley of weekend visitors.

“The Rav4 was following several vehicles in a line when the vehicles travelling in front slowed to allow one vehicle to make a legal left hand turn. Realizing he would not be able to stop, the driver of the Toyota Rav4 drove onto the soft shoulder passing three vehicles on the right, to avoid a collision. After passing the three vehicles, the driver of the Rav4 attempted to pull back onto the travel portion of the roadway but lost control of the vehicle. The Toyota Rav4 crossed the centre line, dividing the lands of north and southbound travel, directly into the path of a northbound Chrysler 200, carrying four persons,” Sgt. Erichsen explained in a media advisory.

The collision killed the 59-year-old woman seated in passenger seat in the front of the Rav4. The driver of the vehicle sustained serious but non-life threatening injuries.

Invermere resident David McGrath was heading home from Edgewater and was one of the first people to arrive on the horrific scene.

“It gets just a bit too real holing a 10-year-old girl next to her mother who I’m not sure survived and trying to calm others trapped in horrific pain inside the carnage while they drift in and out if consciousness,” he stated a short time after.

“Mad props to all the first responders who make it their livelihood helping complete strangers in their time of need,” he said, adding, “After today, I swear, I don’t know how you do what you do – but I have a brand new respect for what you must go through day after day. You truly are superheroes! My heart is literally breaking for the two families involved – keep it calm out there!”

In total, nine people were transported to Invermere & District Hospital. Eight of those patients were later air lifted to hospital in Calgary with serious but non-life threatening injuries.

The incident, three km south of Radium Hot Springs resulted in the closure of Highway 93/95 for about five hours. While many locals used Westside Road as a detour, the closure resulted in long lines of traffic and heavier-than-usual volumes through Crowsnest Pass on Highway 3.

The collision is being investigated by East Kootenay Traffic Services.

Police remind everyone of the importance of wearing properly adjusted seatbelts when traveling on the highways.

Lead image: An Air Ambulance arrives at Invermere and District Hospital on Sunday at noon. Chris Conway Photo

Ian Cobb/e-KNOW

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