Mudslide rescue (Dan Anderson/For the Vernon Morning Star)

B.C. man recounts intense rescue of couple caught in mudslide

Something told Dan Anderson to go back to the scene of a major mudslide on the long weekend.

Something told Dan Anderson to go back to the scene of a major mudslide on the long weekend when others turned away.

Anderson, a Vernon man who was travelling through the Kootenay Mountain Pass for work, was interrupted when he came across the mudslide that nearly killed a Saskatchewan couple.

Related: Couple survives being buried in mudslide on B.C. highway

Upon first look, it seemed to just be an inconvenience. Cars ahead of him turned around and left the scene. Eventually, it was just Anderson and one other man who had stopped to take a picture of the debris-covered road. Anderson said that this compelled him to do the same — something, he says, he wouldn’t instinctually do.

He said it was then that he heard a faint call for help.

“It was way in the distance and it was quite noisy with the water and the rain. It was one of the worst things I’ve ever seen,” he said as he reflected on the violent event on Victoria Day.

He said he called for the other man to come help and the two of them climbed through the wreckage trying to locate the voices. Eventually, they spotted each other. The voices belonged to a couple, Sheri Niemegeers and Gabe Rosescu.

“It was one of the grossest things I’ve ever seen,” says Anderson. “He had several head injuries and his forehead was all opened up. She had a severely broken ankle and could barely stand up.”

They decided to make their way to the other side of the slide, closer to Castlegar side and away from their cars because the path seemed clearer.

“There were fewer trees to crawl through,” he said.

Using trees for leverage, the four of them slowly made their way up the side of the mountain, calling for help. It came. A row of people helped carry Niemegeers to safety and both victims were driven to hospital.

“That’s the last I saw of them that day,” says Anderson. “I went down to the hospital in Kelowna yesterday to visit [Rosescu].”

Anderson said Rosescu was doing well, though he has no recollection of the event. Niemegeers was in hospital in Trail seeking treatment for her ankle.

“I don’t feel I did anything different than any of you would have done,” Anderson wrote in a Facebook post. “I think it’s built into all of us to react to help one another and that’s the one thing that fear can’t win over.”

To report a typo, email:
newstips@vernonmorningstar.com
.


@BrieChar
brieanna.charlebois@vernonmorningstar.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

 

Mudslide rescue (Dan Anderson/For the Vernon Morning Star)

Mudslide rescue (Dan Anderson/For the Vernon Morning Star)

Just Posted

BCHL: Bulldogs pick up one win on weekend road trip

Tanner Pochipinski earns first career BCHL goal

Steelhead, Huu-ay-aht submit plans for Kwispaa LNG Project

Total plan would cost $10 billion, last 25 years

Three strong earthquakes reported off Vancouver Island

The quakes, all measuring more than 6.0 on the richter scale, were about 260 kilometres west of Tofino

Mother passes SD70 trustee torch to daughter in Port Alberni

Jane Jones loses after one term, but proud of her daughter Connie Watts

ELECTION 2018: Sharie Minions named Port Alberni mayor

Haggard, Solda, Washington, Poon, Paulson and Corbeil named councillors

B.C. sailor surprised by humpback whale playing under her boat

Jodi Klahm-Kozicki said the experience was ‘magical’ near Denman Island

35 rescued off whale watching boat in Georgia Strait

Tour company says vessel experienced some kind of mechanical issue

Pipeline opponents blast Trans Mountain re-approval plan

Environmental advocates, First Nations leaders say NEB review has same flaws as it had before

Opioid crisis may be shortening British Columbians’ life expectancy: report

Canada among healthiest wealthy countries, but 8,000 overdose deaths since 2016 are causing concern

B.C. cold case helps ‘60 Minutes’ explain genetic genealogy

An arrest in the 1987 double-murder of two people from Victoria was one of three examples highlighted in a segment you can watch here

Delivery of cannabis could be impacted by postal strike

BC Liquor Distribution Branch look at alternative third-party delivery services

Local businesses that go above and beyond honoured at annual gala

Better Business Bureau of Vancouver Island Torch Awards go Nov. 2 at the Union Club

Around the BCHL: Chilliwack Chiefs snag spot in CJHL national rankings

Around the BCHL is a look at what’s happening in the BCHL and the junior A world.

Rural regions get priority for B.C. referendum mail-out

Ballot security measures aim to protect against voter fraud

Most Read