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West Kootenay man killed in accident near Fernie

RCMP said the driver has been identified as 47-year-old male from Slocan Park, B.C.

RCMP East Kootenay Traffic Services said a Slocan Valley man died Thursday following a head-on collision on Highway 3 north of Hosmer, BC.

Hosmer is 13 kilometers northeast of Fernie.

RCMP Cpl. Ryan C. Bacica said the accident occurred at approximately 7:52 a.m. when a Subaru Impreza travelling eastbound on Highway 3 crossed the centre line and collided head on with a west bound Dodge Grand Caravan.

"The driver of the Grand Caravan suffered a broken leg, and was transported to Fernie Hospital for treatment," Bacica said in a media release.

"The passenger in the Subaru Impreza was also transported to Fernie hospital with a broken leg and fractured pelvis. The driver of the Subaru Impreza suffered extensive injuries and died shortly after the collision at Fernie Hospital."

"The driver has been identified as 47-year-old male from Slocan Park, B.C.," Bacica added.

Bacica said a contributing factor in this collision was the use of insufficient winter tires on the Subaru Impreza (two of the four were summer tires).

"This portion of the highway was icy with active snow falling at the time of the collision, as well as limited visibility from blowing snow," he said.

"The improper use of proper winter tires on this vehicle were a definite contributing factor in this fatality. Police are also not able to rule out possible recent drug use at this point with respect to the deceased driver."

Police said M+S tires with 3.5 mm tread is the minimum requirement for winter driving in B.C. it is highly recommended that you use mountain snowflake tires and carry chains while driving high mountain passes or anywhere that severe winter conditions are likely to occur. The fine for using a tire not properly rated for winter driving is $109 per wheel.

Bacica said the investigation is still on going and no other details can be released at this time. RCMP East Kootenay Traffic Services has taken over the investigation and are seeking any potential witnesses to this collision.

Any witnesses with any information with respect to this collision are asked to contact RCMP East Kootenay Traffic Services at (250) 420-4244.