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Woman missing following motorcycle accident west of Kaslo

RCMP saida this time, the woman is missing, but presumed drowned.

RCMP said a woman is missing and presumed drowned following a motorcycle accident on Highway 31A west of Kaslo Sunday afternoon.

In a media release Monday, police responded to the accident call Sunday, June 21, 2020 at approximately 4:35 p.m., about 15-20 kilometres west of Kaslo.

RCMP said when officers arrived at the accident scene, it was determined that a motorcycle with two occupants was traveling toward New Denver when the driver, a man in his 70's from the West Kootenay area, lost control and left the highway before entering the Kaslo River.

“The driver of the motorcycle was able to swim ashore and drag himself up to the highway where he flagged down a passing motorist for help,” the RCMP media release said.

“The man was taken to an area hospital for treatment of non-life threatening injuries.”

“His female companion, a woman in her 60's, also from the West Kootenays, is believed to have been swept downstream in the fast-flowing river,” the media release added.

“At this time, the woman is missing, but presumed drowned.”

Police said garments worn by the woman have been recovered, including a motorcycle helmet. 

“At this time, it does not appear that impairment was a contributing factor to this crash,” RCMP said.

Police said RCMP, BC Ambulance Service, Swift Water Rescue (from local Fire Department), Nelson Search and Rescue and RCMP Air Services are actively searching the waters of the Kaslo River for the woman. 

“The search is complicated due to the high water levels from spring runoff, it is running very fast and there is considerable debris in the flow,” RCMP said.

West Kootenay Traffic Services (WKTS) in Nelson has conduct of the investigation and is being assisted by the Collision Analysis and Reconstruction Service. 

Anyone with information about this collision, including any dash camera footage is asked to contact WKTS in Nelson at 250-250-354-5180.