Police say a partial lack of snow tires was a “major contributing factor” in a fatal collision on Highway 3 Thursday.
The highway was shut down for several hours between Homer and Sparwood, beginning at about 7:42 a.m.
Several emergency crews were deployed to the crash. Police said in a statement that an eastbound Subaru Impreza with only two winter tires collided head-on with a westbound Dodge Grand Caravan. Both vehicles were traveling at 85 km/h.
The driver of the Subaru Impreza suffered extensive injuries and died shortly after the collision at Fernie Hospital. The driver has been identified as a 47-year-old male from Slocan Park, B.C. His name has been withheld.
The driver of the Grand Caravan suffered a broken leg. The passenger in the Subaru Impreza also suffered a broken leg as well as a fractured pelvis. Both were transported to Fernie Hospital for treatment.
Two of the four tires on the Subaru Impreza were summer tires.
“The improper use of proper winter tires on this vehicle were a definite contributing factor in this fatality,” RCMP said.
Mounties are reminding the public that 3.5 mm tread is the minimum requirement for winter driving in B.C. The fine for not using properly rated winter tires is $109 per wheel.
The investigation remains ongoing. RCMP are seeking any witnesses with information in respect to this collision. Anyone with information can call RCMP East Kootenay Traffic Services at 250-420-4244.