Being prepared helped sledder emerge from Sun Peaks area safe and sound

Mounties and Search and Rescue bring sledder out unharmed after snowmobile broke down on Dec. 20

A snowmobiler whose machine broke down in the Sun Peaks area was rescued uninjured thanks to preparation before the outing and a quick response by Kamloops Search and Rescue crews.

Edward Preto, staff sergeant with the Kamloops RCMP, said officers from the rural detachment were called at 5:20 p.m. on Friday, Dec. 20, to a report of a snowmobile mechanical breakdown in the Sun Peaks area, which had received 31 centimetres of snow in the past 48 hours.

By 11:30 p.m. — six hours after police were called — the snowmobiler was found and was in good condition.

“Sun Peaks was experiencing heavy snowfall and contact was made with the sledder,” Preto said. “Two factors involved here resulted in the perfect outcome of a potential disaster for a sledder and their family: the sledder was prepared for the ride in just such an event with proper clothing, equipment, including GPS, a cellphone and extra batteries, and search and rescue deployed quickly and professionally. Many thanks go to search and rescue, who have been utilized a fair bit lately.”

The rescue came amid a massive rain and snow storm that had been slamming the B.C. south coast and Interior mountain passes, leading to multiple closures of the Coquihalla and other area high-mountain highways.

Those heading to the backcountry in the coming days, were advised to take note that Avalanche Canada reports that the storm and its accompanying snowfall is expected to have a significant impact on avalanche conditions in southern regions of the province.

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