Salmon Arm  

Crash sends two to hospital

Two people were sent to the hospital with non-life-threatening injuries as a result of a car crash Thursday.

The two-vehicle crash caused delays and rerouted traffic along Highway 1 south of Blind Bay. 

Police say just before 1 p.m. a black Ford truck had stopped on Balmoral Road before entering the intersection of  Highway 1.

As the Ford truck entered the highway it collided with a westbound Toyota truck which was travelling through on the highway.

"Both drivers, sole occupants, of the vehicles were transported to Shuswap Lakes General hospital," stated Staff Sgt. Scott West. "Traffic was affected for approximately an hour as emergency crews cared for the injured and removed the two vehicles."


Stolen truck used in getaway

RCMP say thieves used a stolen vehicle to flee the scene of a break and enter at a business on Salmon River Road in Silver Creek Thursday morning.

RCMP were called to the alarm roughly 4 a.m. An early investigation has revealed that at least two culprits clad in masks broke into the business and stole various products, including cigarettes.

"Investigators were able to follow up on the vehicle the culprits used in this break and enter," stated Staff Sgt. Scott West. "The vehicle, a
white 2006 Ford F350 had been stolen from Golf Course Drive in Blind Bay sometime after 9 p.m. on August 8th."

The British Columbia licence plate on the vehicle at the time it was stolen is "JG 1908". 

The truck has large tires and what is believed to be aftermarket black rims.

If members of the public see this vehicle do not attempt to apprehend or stop the vehicle, please call 911 with the location of the truck and the police will attend.

If you feel that you have information about either of these crimes please call the Salmon Arm RCMP at (250) 832 6044 or leave an anonymous tip with Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477)

Woman dies in bridge jump

A 23-year-old New Zealand woman has died after she and three friends jumped from a bridge in Sicamous.

RCMP say it happened about 2 a.m. Wednesday when all four people leaped from the bridge, 20 metres above the channel connecting Shuswap and Mara lakes.

When the woman didn't resurface after the jump, her friends found her and pulled her to shore where she was rushed to hospital, but was pronounced dead.

Police say there is nothing criminal about the death.

The BC Coroners Service is continuing an investigation and the woman's name will not be released.

The death is the second water-related fatality in Sicamous this summer and the Lifesaving Society of BC and Yukon says 34 drowning deaths had been recorded in B.C. up to Aug. 1.


Evacuation order rescinded

A long-standing evacuation order has been lifted for two properties near Herald Provincial Park outside Salmon Arm on Shuswap Lake.

According to the Columbia Shuswap Regional District, the properties were ordered evacuated April 7, 2017, due to a mudslide. 

"The residents of 4467 and 4473 Sunnybrae Canoe Point Road are now permitted to return to their property, but will remain on Evacuation Alert and must be prepared to evacuate on short notice should weather conditions deteriorate or site conditions warrant re-evacuation."

The mudslide destroyed two homes and sent two people to hospital.

Vandalism act is hate crime

A point of pride for many in the Salmon Arm community has been defaced twice in a week. 

The recently completed rainbow crosswalk at 5th Street SW and 5th Ave SW by Blackburn Park has been marked by vandalism. 

In the first incident on Friday, somebody created a large black tire mark across the rainbow. The tire burnout was cleaned. 

Then the second incident, on Sunday, somebody spraypainted anti-gay hate speech across the length of the crosswalk.

Castanet has elected not to share the message in this story, however, as Sgt. Scott Lachapelle of the Salmon Arm RCMP explains the message of hate was directed specifically to a segment of the Salmon Arm community. 

"It was obviously aimed at a specific group. It was a message discriminating against that group. Very disheartening knowing that there are elements in the community that view this symbol of acceptance and malign such a symbol."   

The colours of the rainbow represent diversity and the symbol of the rainbow is used as a display of pride for the global LGBTQ community.

"The incident itself is an act of vandalism, it is a mischief investigation. However, given that it is aimed at a particular group, it is classified as a hate crime" 

Lachapelle says that RCMP are investigating the matter and taking the vandalism seriously as hate speech. 

"Although some people may view this as mere vandalism complaint, it is a symptom of a larger problem, and we need to deal with that."

The crosswalk was completed a little more than two weeks ago.

Mayor Nancy Cooper says despite the defacing of the crosswalk, Salmon Arm is an inclusive community and acts like this won't change that fact.

"It is disheartening and as much as we don't want to give a lot of attention to who whoever is doing this, we can't just let it go either and that is why it is being investigated by the RCMP."

Cooper says that the crosswalk was created as a point of pride for the community, and it will remain so, despite the efforts of the individual(s) who did this. 

Fire engulfs structure

A fire tore through a structure near Magna Bay on the Shuswap early Sunday morning, according to a witness.

Margaret Morris, an employee with Shuswap Parks Patrol, says the fire sparked at about 1:45 a.m. and crews arrived quickly to fight the blaze.

The fire was seen spreading to another nearby structure but was quickly contained, says Morris.

Fire crews were on scene mopping up the mess until about 5 a.m. Sunday morning.

It's unknown the extent of the damages.

No one was believed to be injured in the fire.

Colours of the rainbow

What was born out of a council meeting at a high school, is now a permanent fixture in Salmon Arm

The City of Salmon Arm has a rainbow crosswalk. 

The idea was first pitched to council a few years ago by high school students as a way of creating an inclusive community. 

"Last year at budget time we actually put it in the 2018 budget to do this," says Salmon Arm mayor Nancy Cooper. "Everybody is very supportive, and the community was very supportive."

The sidewalk represents the LGBTQ community in Salmon Arm. The rainbow is used as a symbol of gay pride during LGBTQ rights marches.

The colours reflect diversity.

"It was a statement for us," says Cooper. "It is recognition that this community recognizes that there are people with differences and we are being inclusive. We don't want anybody to feel left out."

The crosswalk is located at 5th Street SW and 5th Ave SW by Blackburn Park near the skate park, which is a popular area of town not only for locals but for visitors as well.

"There are all kinds of different families and youth that are out there we thought it was an appropriate location," says Cooper.

In a few weeks, the Salmon Arm Roots and Blues Festival will be held across the street from Blackburn park and upwards of 25,000 people will use the crosswalk to get to the venue.

"That will shine," says Cooper.

Body recovered from lake

The body of a 26-year-old man has been recovered from Mara Lake outside Sicamous.

RCMP were called to the lake Monday morning, after receiving a report that a man had gone missing. 

Through its investigation, RCMP say they were able to determine that the man may have tried to save another man after he heard somebody yelling from the lake at around 4 a.m.

The man, heard yelling, in apparent distress, made it back to shore safely.

The RCMP dive team was able to find the missing man's body at 1 p.m. in two metres of water between the beach and the resort. 

The investigation has been turned over to the BC Coroners Service.

Fire at Tappen sawmill

A fire at a sawmill in Tappen had the potential to get away from fire crews due to strong winds and fine particulate in the area.

The fire broke out around 7:30 p.m. Friday and Tappen Fire Department Chief Ryan Gray said there were some difficulties when it came to battling the blaze.

“The wind was an issue for us,” said Gray, adding 28 firefighters from three volunteer departments responded to the call. “We got there at a good time before the gusts really were bad so if it would have started an hour later it would have been a definite challenge.”

Gray said there were concerns the fire could get away due to the fine burning sawdust that was blowing around, but crews kept it under control.

“It blows all over the place and could have started some other piles on fire,” he said, adding crews were on scene for six hours.

Warm temperatures also made things more difficult as firefighters had to make sure they were not overcome by the heat.

The cause of the fire is under investigation.

Man killed by train

A man is dead after being struck by a train in the Shuswap last week.

RCMP Staff Sgt. Scott West said on July 7 after 8 p.m., Salmon Arm RCMP, Provincial Coroner’s Service and CP Police attended to a train versus pedestrian collision on the tracks one to two kilometres east of the intersection of Tappen Beach Road and the rail lines.

“The preliminary investigation revealed that an adult male took actions that resulted in a collision with a train while on foot. The male succumbed to injuries as a result of the collision,” said West.

“The death is not suspicious and RCMP investigative efforts are in support of the BC Coroners Service investigation and CP Rail investigation.”

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