Canadians had plenty to “weather” in 2015 as Mother Nature either froze, buried, scorched, blew or frightened us at various times throughout the year. We endured weather bombs, nor’easters, a growing super El Niño, deluges and expensive hailers. Rarely have we seen a year with such a variety of weather contrasts from coast-to-coast. And while property damage from weather cost insurers and governments millions and the economy billions, this year we were spared devastating hurricanes, had fewer tornadoes and experienced less weather-related personal injuries and fatalities.
1. Record Cold Winter in the East
2. Forests Blazing in the West
3. dry to Almost Disastrous in the West
4. Maritime Snowmaggedon
5. Record Hot Dry Summer across BC
6. The Prairie’s Stormy Summer
7. Super Bowl/Groundhog Day Storm
8. BC’s Big August Blow
9. Maritime’s Valentine Storm … A White Juan-a-be
10. January in July for St. John’s
TMTVNEWS.COM – The search for the man who was seen falling through the ice on the Kettle River on Wednesday December 30, 2015 has been completed, with RCMP divers and Search and Rescue locating and recovering the man’s body by midday.
RCMP divers and Search and Rescue personnel located and recovered the body of a man who had fallen through the ice on the Kettle River on Wednesday, near Grand Forks.
Search efforts saw SAR personnel clearing ice away in the vicinity where the man was last seen. SAR volunteers spotted the man’s body submerged in the river at which time an RCMP diver was able to safely enter the water and recovered the male from a depth of 5.6 meters.
Police were called to the Kettle River near Highway 3 around 2:45 p.m. PT Wednesday. They spotted a man hanging onto the ice edge, but before they could reach him he lost his grip and went under the ice.
RCMP say they don’t know why he was on the partially frozen river but suspect he may have been trying to take a short cut to the other side.
The investigation into the man’s death has now been handed over to BC Coroners Service. Next of Kin notifications have not yet been completed.
On the heels of their busiest year ever, the tireless volunteers of Vancouver’s North Shore Rescue team in Vancouver are turning to humour to highlight the not-so-funny ways people get themselves in trouble — and sometimes killed — when heading into the local mountains but can also apply to southeast BC as well due to the amount of people that head into the back country and are totally unprepared.
The article makes it clear that the purpose of the list is to encourage individuals to do exactly the opposite.
Do not tell anyone where you are going or when to expect you back – if we don’t know you are lost, or where to look, it is likely we will not find you (or even start looking for you).
Travel by yourself – It is far easier for something to go wrong if there is no one there to call for help or to provide emergency assistance while SAR is enroute. Who needs a pesky companion to watch their back!
Do not stay in bounds or on established trails – If you were looking to get yourself into trouble, why would you stay in areas that are controlled for avalanches and have ski patrollers dedicated to keeping you safe? Similarly, why not head off the beaten path into terrain that has claimed so many lives?
If you get lost, just keep going and going and going … – Needle in a haystack anyone? Now picture that haystack being a mountain, and that needle still being a needle, only a moving one. Definitely a great way to not get found. Similarly, if you keep heading downhill you will likely encounter steeper terrain and slippery waterfalls. This is definitely a sure fire way to slip and fall to your death.
Do not plan your route or check the Avalanche.ca Forecast – This one should be pretty obvious if you are trying to get yourself killed. Why would you want to know the conditions and plan your route accordingly, when you can just run head long into complex terrain and get buried in an avalanche?
Do not carry a avalanche transceiver, probe and shovel – If you want to seal the deal when you get buried by an avalanche – provided you have ignored point 2 – it is likely that you don’t want your companions to have the tools they need to rescue you. In the odd chance you are still alive when SAR arrives, not having a transceiver will pretty much guarantee that they don’t find you before the air runs out.
Do not wear clothing and footwear appropriate for the environment – There is no faster way to freeze to death than by wearing cotton clothing, denim, and rain boots. If you want to chance survival, yoga clothes may go either way. You definitely don’t want a change of warm wool clothing available in the event you get wet either.
Do not pay attention to sunset time and definitely do not carry a light – It’s way easier to lose the trail, get lost, and freeze when you can’t see where you are going.
Do not carry the 10 essentials, ever – If you are looking to get killed, you definitely don’t want to be well hydrated or have the basic survival tools necessary to survive until SAR arrives. Why have the ability to make a fire or build a shelter if you plan to freeze?
Never turn around or alter plans when conditions change – If the weather changes for the worse, or you start to notice signs of increasing avalanche risk (radiating cracks, wumpfing, observable slides), you may as well keep going. Not going to die by turning back right?
TMTVNEWS.COM, KELOWNA, B.C. CANADA — A boxcar thought to be the last of its kind will soon be moved from Kelowna to the Revelstoke Railway Museum.
The Kelowna organization, which runs four local museums, acquired the Canadian Pacific Railway refrigerated boxcar — known as a “reefer” — in 1987, but for a variety of reasons never put it on display.
Rusty and covered in graffiti, the boxcar has sat neglected in north Kelowna’s industrial district where it has been vandalized over the years.
The boxcar could be transported to Revelstoke, 200 kilometres away, by flatbed truck as early as Thursday.
The Kelowna Railway group has decided to give it to the Revelstoke museum, which has the expertise to restore it and put it on display.
TMTVNEWS.COM – Most people are thinking of their winter vacation but Parks Canada’s reservation service wants you to think about reserving your spot for your spring and summer vacation. Reservations open in January.
Parks Canada website says “To make it easier to plan your experiences, reservations will now be available beginning in January 2016 for visits during the period of April 2016 through to March 2017.”
Welcome to Parks Canada’s online Reservation Service for 27 national parks and historic sites across Canada. Whether it be a fully-serviced campsite, roofed accommodation, an interpretive guided hike or a remote backcountry experience, visitors can plan their experience with confidence and travel at ease, with the peace of mind of a guaranteed place at their favourite location.
For a star that’s in its minimum cycle, our sun is giving us plenty of action lately.
On Monday, the sun belched out a coronal mass ejection, and those particles are heading our way. And that means that once again, we’ve got a chance to see the northern lights.
The U.S. Space Weather Prediction Center (SPWC) is forecasting that a G3 geomagnetic storm will reach Earth some time on Dec. 30 and could continue into Dec. 31. Geomagnetic storms range from G1 (minor) to G5 (extreme). A G3 is considered strong.
Coronal mass ejections (CME) occur when the sun blasts particles into space. These fast-moving particles are carried along on the solar wind and, when they reach Earth, they interact with our magnetic field; we see that reaction as the northern lights.
Our sun goes through maximums (with increased solar activity such as sunspots) and minimums. Sunspots are linked to solar flares which are in turn most often accompanied by CMEs. The sun is currently in its minimum cycle with few sunspots, but that doesn’t seem to be making a difference, as this is the fourth time in about three weeks that we’ve beentreated to a display of the northern lights
TMTVNEWS.COM, Nelson BC – On Dec 26th Nelson Search and Rescue (NSAR) was called out for two overdue skiers in the humming Bird Pass area south of Nelson BC once again.
Subjects were reported overdue after he failed to a meet partner for dinner. Upon some investigating the subject was last seen at the Humming Bird Pass area with a known companion.
The 2 were seen going up the pass in early afternoon. Seven members of NSAR were available to respond. South Columbia was also called out to assist Nelson in the search.
Again after a week members were out all night looking in the 5 mile drainage where most subjects are found. The team travelled all night not finding the subjects in the typical location and returned in the early am. On the return trip it seems our members were beat to the parking lot by the subjects. They were on the whales back area and were hunkered down for the night. It seemed they had equipment troubles and boot packed down in the early am tired and cold. Our team met them at the parking lot at the same time of their return to base. A good outcome once again.
Nelson Search and Rescue assists Creston Search and Rescue for missing Snowboarder
Location, Creston BC Dec 27th Nelson SAR was called out for mutual aid assistance to Creston SAR who was responding to a 911 call from a lost snowboarder on Mt Thompson, east of Creston. The snowboarder was dropped by a friend with a snow machine at the height of land on Mt Thompson. The male snowboarder proceeded off the ridge in a direction he thought would lead him to a road. He was alone and un-equipped for the backcountry. The male became lost but was able to call for help by cell phone.
NSAR responded with 5 members and a UTV, arrived at Creston SAR Base along with members from South Columbia SAR. At that time we were informed that an RCMP Dog Handler from Cranbrook had proceeded to follow the subject’s tracks on skis with his search dog and had reached the subject but the two needed assistance to make their way out. 3 NSAR members followed the tracks down and met up with the subject and RCMP member in steep, dense trees. A track was set up to an old logging road that was accessible by snowmobile and the team was able to lead the pair out after several hours.
TMTVNEWS.COM – While attitudes toward drinking and driving have changed considerably over the years, 86 lives are still lost every year in B.C., representing more than a quarter of all car crash fatalities.*
That’s why the B.C. government, police and ICBC are urging drivers to plan ahead and make smart decisions to get home safely this holiday season. Since the beginning of December, CounterAttack roadchecks have been set up by police throughout the province to keep impaired drivers off our roads.
ICBC is helping to prevent impaired driving this December with an education campaign, funding for CounterAttack roadchecks and promotion of designated drivers with businesses, sports facilities and community groups.
It’s also the 20th year that ICBC has supported Operation Red Nose, a volunteer service in 25 B.C. communities that provides safe rides to drivers who have been drinking or feel too tired to drive during the holidays. This service will be available on New Year’s Eve.
During the month of December, an average of four people are killed in impaired-related crashes every year in B.C.
On average, 23 people are killed in crashes involving impaired driving in the Lower Mainland every year.
On average, 29 people are killed in crashes involving impaired driving in the Southern Interior every year.
On average, 13 people are killed in crashes involving impaired driving on Vancouver Island every year.
On average, 22 people are killed in crashes involving impaired driving in North Central B.C. every year.
* Based on five-year average. Crashes and injured victims from ICBC data (2009 to 2013); fatal victims from police data (2009 to 2013). Impaired is defined to include alcohol, illicit drugs and medicines.