South Okanagan has deadly start to the summer season

The past week has been a deadly start to the summer season in the Okanagan.

RCMP members check the scene of an accident Monday involving a car and motorcycle on Highway 97 near the entrance road to Sun Leisure mobile home park.  The rider of the motorcycle

RCMP members check the scene of an accident Monday involving a car and motorcycle on Highway 97 near the entrance road to Sun Leisure mobile home park. The rider of the motorcycle

The past week has been a deadly start to the summer season in the Okanagan.

The first tragic accident happened last Wednesday when avid Penticton cyclist Adam Larsson died as a result of injuries he suffered when struck by a vehicle while riding in Oliver.

Since then two people died in an airplane crash in Vernon, an Oliver woman drowned in a boating accident in Gallagher Lake Monday and at press time Tuesday a Kelowna motorcyclist was fighting for his life after a collision with a car Monday afternoon.

In the most recent incident, Oliver RCMP report the unidentified 32-year-old woman is believed to have drowned after falling out of a paddleboat between 6-6:20 p.m. Witnesses to the accident at Gallagher Lake reportedly attempted CPR prior to her transport to South Okanagan General Hospital in Oliver where she was subsequently pronounced dead. A police spokesman said alcohol consumption and and prescription drugs may have been aggravating factors in the death.

Earlier that day the RCMP South Okanagan traffic services division was called to the scene of the motorcycle accident on Highway 97 near the Penticton Regional Airport.

According to Cpl. Bryce Petersen, the Honda motorcycle operated by a Kelowna man in his 30s was westbound on the highway when a small blue Pontiac pulled out from the entrance road to Sun Leisure mobile home park and the vehicles collided. Traffic remained backed up in several directions, including the highway and Channel Parkway, for several hours while police conducted their investigation. The two people in the car from Penticton received minor injuries. While RCMP say alcohol is not a factor, speed and driving behaviour may have played a part in the incident.

Officers are asking for assistance from anyone who may have seen the collision or the driving patterns of the vehicles beforehand. Traffic services can be reached at 250-499-2250.

Meanwhile Sgt. Ken Harrington said Tuesday there are no further details surrounding the accident involving the Penticton cyclist.  He added it will likely be several months before traffic analysts have completed their work and conclusions, if any, are released.

Larsson was well know in the local cycling community and was riding along Tuc-el-Nuit Road when the accident occurred. A memorial service for the 37-year-old is planned for Thursday at Covert Farms in Oliver.

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