Sicamous and Malakwa firefighters take part in a live fire training exercise. File photo

Year in Review: March

The Eagle Valley News looks back at some of the headlines from March

  • Dec. 27, 2017 6:00 p.m.

• Sicamous residents received some answers regarding the proposed Bruhn Bridge replacement options, but are still far from a consensus.

Though relatively new to the community, District of Sicamous town manager Evan Parliament had the duty of hosting and answering the majority of questions posed by an audience of roughly 260 people at a town hall meeting in the Eagle River Secondary gymnasium.

Up for discussion was the three bridge replacement options proposed by the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure: Option 1, a six-lane bridge; Option 2, a five-lane bridge; and Option 3, a new four-lane bridge as well as a new bridge at the end of Main Street crossing the channel to Old Spallumcheen Road.

Parliament said MOTI stated the project is only in its preliminary/conceptual stage, with the final design being years away, and construction tentatively scheduled for spring/summer 2019 or 2020.

• A Malakwa resident is dead and another person in hospital with serious injuries following a two-vehicle collision east of Sicamous on Highway 1.

Sgt. Rob Haney, unit commander with the RCMP Trans-Canada East Traffic Services, reported a 74-year-old Malakwa woman died at the scene of the accident which occurred on Highway 1 and Solsqua Road.

• A Sicamous family was in need of accommodation after experiencing their second residential fire in as many years. Tyler Dymond said the fire was discovered when his wife, Kim, heard what sounded like water leaking in their Pine Street home. The leaking was the result of a fire that had spread into the wall behind a bathroom shower.

“I’m not sure where it started, I have no idea,” said Tyler. “I knew that I went out there and I grabbed my two fire extinguishers and we did what we did but it had already gone into the roof.”

Tyler said he and his family, including four-year-old son and three-month old daughter were quick to get out, with neighbours helping in the process.

• The Sicamous Eagles will begin their 2017/2018 season under the wing of a new head coach. Rob Fitzpatrick will be replacing Matt Stang as the team’s bench boss.

“We’re excited to have him on the ice with our junior team,” said Eagles general manager Wayne March.

The change-up follows a rocky regular-season that saw Stang replace former head coach Ty Davidson two months and zero wins in. Under Stang, the Eagles slogged through the rest of the season to earn 10 wins and 21 points, but were unable to claw their way to the playoffs.

• Efforts are underway to make Sicamous a contender for Communities in Bloom. Deb Heap is the person behind the push to prepare the community for its participation this summer in the Communities in Bloom program, designed to foster civic pride through community involvement.

“My focus is more about the people in the community and the businesses in the community, changing the community positively and kind of getting on board,” said Heap.

• The District of Sicamous could face a bill of up to $4.4 million to replace the Sicamous-Solsqua Bridge in its current location, according to a report prepared for the district by All-Span Engineering and Construction Ltd.

• Those planning on taking a walk around Old Town Bay in Sicamous were urged to keep on the lookout for cougars. One or more of the wild cats were seen in the beach area. A cougar happened to cross Rob Wilcock’s path on the beach.

“I was walking along the beach and I heard a rustling in the trees and a deer came flying out, a couple of big hops and dove into the lake,” said Wilcock. “Before I could even wonder, why is he diving into the lake, a cougar came running out of the bush right behind him.”

• The Salmon Arm Observer and Eagle Valley News have been nominated as top three finalists in the general excellence category for their respective circulation categories. Awards will be announced in April.

• Firefighters spent more than 12 hours battling a blaze at the Elite Forest Products mill in Malakwa.

• Sicamous’ two schools will remain open but some major adjustments are moving ahead. Parkview Elementary will become a K-6, and Eagle River Secondary 7-12.

• A proposed logging operation near Hummingbird Creek has unleashed a wave of protest by Swansea residents and others who don’t want to see history repeated. Tolko Industries Ltd. proposed 11 cut blocks for the uplands above Swansea Point.

• After 22 years with the District of Sicamous Fire Department, Brett Ogino became the first full-time chief.

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