Kootenay Search and Rescue teams stayed at the Trail site into the early evening. (Trail Times file photo)

Updated: Coroner investigating death of Trail man

A complicated recovery was required for a man who died in a fall above the Trail hospital

The BC Coroners Service has confirmed that a local man died in an accident above Kootenay Boundary Regional Hospital on Wednesday.

“We were notified today (Thursday),” spokesperson Andy Watson told the Trail Times via email.

“I can confirm the coroners service is in the early stages of its investigation involving a male, in his 30s, from Trail,” Watson stated. “Due to the privacy of the deceased, we will not be confirming or releasing the identity of the decedent, per the Coroners Act and provincial privacy legislation.”

Early Thursday, Cpl. Devon Reid said that Trail police would make no further comment as the case had been turned over to the coroners service in Kelowna.

He explained police act only as the service’s agent when the coroner’s office leads an investigation.

Late Thursday, president Mike Hudson from South Columbia SAR released the following details of the operation.

“South Columbia Search and Rescue was called in to mutually assist Rossland Search and Rescue with a fallen climber in Trail yesterday at approx 10:15 a.m.,” he began.

“Castlegar and Grand Forks SAR were also on scene to assist with rescue efforts.”

A call had been reported of a person climbing on the rock bluffs behind the Trail hospital just above the heli- pad area, and that they had fallen, Hudson continued.

“Search and Rescue crews responded to the scene and began rescue operations. Upon arrival to the location of our subject and medical assessment, our subject was found to be deceased. Upon further safety assessment of the area it was determined that some expertise was needed with geo-technical background to assess the rock face in our location before we could continue with rescue efforts.”

Rock debris and broken trees impeded the rescue.

“It appears that the climber was climbing up the rock face and the piece of face the climber grabbed broke free and our subject fell approx 50 meters,” Hudson stated.

“Our rope safety technicians went in with the geo technical adviser and began making the area safe for continued operations. Several large boulders ( large in size like a pick up truck box) and several other sizes where pushed away from the rock face and all other overhead debris was removed for safety.

“During this process access to the Trail hospital had to be temporarily closed to allow for falling debris to be safely removed.”

HETS rescue (Helicopter External Transport System) was called in to assist extraction efforts.

“Once the area was made safe and rescuers could re-enter, rope members set up a High Angle Rescue system to assist with the HETS operation and attendants to safely get our subject out,” Hudson said.

“Our subject was then airlifted to the JL Crowe high school area and then released to waiting paramedics. Approximately 18 to 20 members responded to this call and with various technical backgrounds. Our rescue operations were completed about 5:30 p.m.”

Hudson thanks all the responders that attended this call and for all their help with rescue efforts.

****************************************************************************************************************

A 9-1-1 call came in to Kootenay Boundary Regional Fire Rescue mid-morning Wednesday, stating someone had witnessed a person fall several metres from a rock face above the hospital.

A witness said she was leaving the hospital and noticed a cloud of dust and some rocks falling near the graffiti-covered face of the bluffs.

That’s when the witness saw someone “roped in and chipping away at rocks.”

The witness said then a larger rock fell and took the climber down to a plateau above the hospital’s helipad.

Police stayed on scene with Search and Rescue teams from Castlegar, Rossland, South Columbia and Grand Forks late into the day while geo-engineers assessed the site as the rocks were reported to be unstable.

A HETS rescue – or helicopter long line rescue – was also called in.

Helicopter long line rescue systems can offer rapid rescue response and reduced risk exposure over traditional land rescue based techniques in remote, high angle terrain or difficult to access work sites.

Related story here: Climber falls above Kootenay Boundary Regional Hospital

Just Posted

Nelson Star wins three national awards

One photo, one news story, and an editorial impressed judges at Canadian Community Newspaper Awards

West Kootenay Community Teeth Clinic Society in need of dentists

The society works with clinics to offer affordable care

Bounty on West Kootenay northern pike

$10 a head reward for northern pike caught in Columbia, Kootenay and Pend d’ Oreille Rivers.

Nelson fire department douses blaze on CPR land

Nelson police are investigating

‘The Columbia River is on fire!’

Fishing columnist Kerry Reed on the great fishing in the Columbia River and Kootenay Lake

VIDEO: Endurance cyclists ride West Kootenay trails

The TransBC Enduro swung through Rossland, Castlegar and Nelson

Trudeau’s youth council divided over Trans Mountain pipeline purchase

A letter signed by 16 past and present members was made public today, asking the federal government to reverse course

Hulk Hogan reinstated into wrestling Hall of Fame

Hogan had used racial slurs caught on video when talking about his daughter sleeping with a black man

‘Lava bomb’ through roof of tour boat injures 22 in Hawaii

“An explosion occurred near the shoreline hurling hot lava rocks towards the boat and injuring several passengers”

B.C. teen meets Nicolas Cage

Filming mob movie in downtown Vernon, B.C.

Critics claim Trump “defended a tyrant”

Trump questions US intel, not Putin, on Russia 2016 meddling

B.C. MLAs choose new children’s watchdog

Jennifer Charlesworth has worked in government, social services

B.C. reporter calls out immigration photo on social media as fake news

A Vancouver reporter is calling out a British politician for spreading fake news

Hundreds of Arctic glaciers shrinking, disappearing

Out of 1,773 glaciers, 1,353 shrank significantly between 2000 and 2016

Most Read