POLICE BEAT: First serious snowfall causes multiple ice-related accidents; thieves continue to target unlocked vehicles

Erin Perkins
By Erin Perkins
December 11th, 2012

Grand Forks RCMP and local fire rescue departments were kept busy with multiple single vehicle accidents along Highway 3 this past week.

While our recent snowfall has made the season seem more festive, it is also a reminder for drivers to slow down and get into their winter driving mode.

“During the first two week (of winter weather) is when we get the most number of accidents because people are transitioning from summer driving habits to winter habits,” said Grand Forks RCMP staff sergeant Jim Harrison. “But sometimes they don’t transition fast enough, and as a result, we get more accidents.”

Most of the accidents were minor ones, involving only a single vehicle. The first was on Friday, Dec. 7 at 10:51 p.m. on Highway 3 in Grand Forks. The 52 year-old woman from Grand Forks lost control of her 2002 Jeep Liberty on Highway 3 close to the 2nd Street Bridge. The vehicle was impounded and she received a roadside suspension for driving under the influence.

The second was on Highway 3 at Lafferty Pit Road in Christina Lake at 10:23 a.m. on Saturday, Dec. 8. It was another single vehicle accident in which the 60 year-old woman from Slocan lost control of her Ford pick-up truck, and rolled her vehicle off the embankment. The driver suffered from a broken right arm.

“Speed was not a factor but slippery road conditions were,” said Harrison.

That same day, at 12:28 p.m. on Highway 3 at the Eholt summit a male driver from Warfield lost control of his vehicle and wound up on the roof off the side of the road. Again, icy conditions were to blame and no charges were laid. The man suffered minor bruising from his seatbelt, said Harrison, adding that without his seatbelt the injuries would have been far greater.

The fourth accident was on Sunday, Dec. 9 at 3:39 p.m. on Highway 3 at Billings Road in Christina Lake. The 48 year-old male driver from Abbotsford was traveling west bound at 90 kilometers an hour when he lost control of his 2007 Chevrolet Silverado pick-up truck.

“He went down the steep bank right across from the Trans Canada Trail,” said Harrison. “He felt is backend slide, took his foot of the accelerator but continued sliding on the ice … The police officer (who attended) said it was so icy he nearly fell over himself.”

The driver suffered minor bruising to his arms and back.

Thief or thieves continue to target unlocked vehicles for change and other valuables

Grand Forks RCMP responded to four more complaints of unlocked vehicles being entered and loose change and other assorted valuables being stolen.

On Tuesday, Dec. 4 at noon police received a complaint of a vehicle that was parked at a residence on Como Street having been broken into and between $2 and $5 worth of change being stolen from it.

“We examined for fingerprints, but that didn’t go anywhere,” said Harrison, who has been dealing with this petty thievery for the past month.

On Wednesday, Dec. 5 police responded to three separate reports of similar activities.

The first complaint was made at 8:23 a.m. when a “small amount of change” was stolen from a vehicle parked on 5h Street, said Harrison.

The second report was made at 9:04 a.m. where two vehicles parked at the same home on 64th Street were raided. In one the person got away with some change, in the pick-up truck there was $2 in change missing and some tools.

The third was made after noon on the same day when a van that had been unlocked and parked on 11th Street was opened and the contents of the glove compartment were emptied out onto the passenger side seat and left that way. Amongst the contents were the owner’s passports.

“They were very fortunate,” said Harrison of the passports being left behind.

“It’s pretty brazen,” said Harrison of the vehicles parked in driveways being rummaged through. “All of those were in town, all involving unlocked vehicles and mostly they made off with change.”

“Make sure your vehicle is secure,” reminds Harrison. “If you leave stuff in the vehicle and it can be seen from the window, it will be taken.”

Harrison said police do have several suspects in mind and he’d love to catch them in the act to put an “end to this nonsense”.

If you have any information regarding this call the Grand Forks RCMP at 250-442-8288 or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477.

Categories: CrimeGeneral

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