Volunteers firefighters attend Thursday’s collision on Highway 3, between Grand Forks and Greenwood. Photo: Submitted

Volunteers firefighters attend Thursday’s collision on Highway 3, between Grand Forks and Greenwood. Photo: Submitted

Man survives Highway 3 collision between Grand Forks, Greenwood

Midway RCMP says they’ve ruled out drugs and alcohol

A Rock Creek man was taken to hospital Thursday afternoon, July 9, following a single-vehicle collision on Highway 3, west of Grand Forks.

READ MORE: Injured motorist airlifted to hospital after Highway 3 crash near Grand Forks

READ MORE: Motorist killed in Highway 3 crash was a Castlegar man: Grand Forks RCMP

Midway RCMP’s Cpl. Phil Peters said the man, 21, was driving alone when at around 3:30 p.m. his late-model Jeep left the westbound lane between Boundary Creek Road and the Wilgress Lake rest area. Crossing the centre-line, the Jeep then drove off the road, flipping end-over-end before landing in a ditch below the eastbound lane.

A late-model Jeep stands on its wheels after flipping down a highway-side ditch Thursday, July 9. Photo: Submitted

A late-model Jeep stands on its wheels after flipping down a highway-side ditch Thursday, July 9. Photo: Submitted

The man was able to get himself out of the car, despite significant damage to the vehicle, Peters said. He was fully conscious and alert when he was met by first-responders shortly thereafter. He was taken to Grand Forks’ Boundary Hospital by ambulance with what appeared to be non-life-threatening injuries.

Peters said Mounties don’t suspect drugs or alcohol were involved, qualifying that, while they’re not recommending criminal charges, investigators aren’t sure what caused the collision. A motorist had seen the Jeep weaving in its lane shortly before it drove off the road, but Peters said they weren’t able to phone 911 until after the dust settled, by which point both cars were barely out of the cellular “dead zone” between Grand Forks and Greenwood.

A close-up photo shows the Jeep’s front driver’s-side tire bent at nearly 180 degrees to the ground. Photo: Submitted

A close-up photo shows the Jeep’s front driver’s-side tire bent at nearly 180 degrees to the ground. Photo: Submitted

“Even then, the 911 calls kept dropping,” Peters said, calling the lack of mobile reception, “a public safety issue.”

Peters said the man is “incredibly lucky,” noting that his Jeep landed around 10 metres from a drop-off beside the ditch. The motorist who phoned 911 said a third vehicle had rounded a nearby corner seconds before the Jeep crossed the highway, narrowly avoiding a head-on collision.

Thursday’s collision was attended by Midway RCMP, the Greenwood Volunteer Fire Department and BC Ambulance paramedics, according to Peters.

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