Fatal accident between Falkland and Vernon

Highway 97 closed until 6:30 p.m., traffic being re-routed around Round Lake

UPDATE: 5:45 P.M. – The RCMP continue to investigate a motor vehicle accident that claimed two lives.

The incident occurred at about 7:30 a.m. Friday when two vehicles collided on Highway 97, northwest of Madeline Lake Road in the Round Lake area.

The two drivers died.

“The identity of the drivers is being withheld pending next of kin notifications,” said Cst. Melissa Wutke, with the RCMP.

“RCMP traffic reconstructionists and the B. C. Coroners Service are engaged in this investigation.”

As of 5:45 p.m. Friday, Highway 97 remains closed in both directions at the accident scene between Vernon and Falkland.

The estimated time of opening is 6:30 p.m. A detour is available at Round Lake Road, which is single-lane, alternating traffic. Motorists should expect 30 minutes delays.

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UPDATE: 11:50 a.m.

RCMP are releasing few details on a major crash that closed down Highway 97 between Vernon and Falkland Friday morning.

The two-vehicle incident took place northwest of Madeline Lake Road (15 kilometres south of Falkland). RCMP has been reported as saying one person is dead from the accident.

“Vernon North Okanagan police continue to investigate this collision,” said Cst. Melissa Wutke, media relations officer.

Emergency personnel report that an unconscious 50-year-old man was extricated from a vehicle. One of the vehicles involved was on fire.

Air ambulance was on scene early Friday morning.

Meanwhile, Highway 97 is currently closed in both directions 15 km south of Falkland. A detour is available at Round Lake Road. Delays of 30 minutes can be expected, according to Drive BC.

The highway isn’t expected to fully re-open until 6 p.m.

In the meantime, alternate routes are encouraged on Highway 97A or Highway 1.

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UPDATE: 11:10 a.m.

Highway 97 is open to single lane alternating traffic, according to Drive BC.

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UPDATE: 9:56 a.m.

Highway 97 is expected to re-open by noon following a major accident between Vernon and Falkland.

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A serious accident has closed Highway 97 between Vernon and Falkland.

Emergency personnel report that an unconscious 50-year-old man has been extricated from a vehicle at the accident at Round Lake (15 kilometres south of Falkland).

Air ambulance is on scene, along with fire fighters as a vehicle was on fire.

Two vehicles were involved in the crash, including a truck heading south bound.

Motorists are urged to be cautious when nearing the accident scene.

Traffic is being re-routed around Round Lake.

More details to come.