Saturday, 20 March 2010

Sledding at the speed of suicide

Snowmobile Incidents 2009-10
Running totals: 86 Canadian incidents, 67 deaths, and quite a few unreported and near misses.
Last update: March 20, 2010
I have been carefully collecting these stories, through News Releases. It is time that we slow down, enjoy nature, and show more concern for the land. There is danger in those hills.
Just when I thought the season's death toll was done: the March 15 videos are telling (see the one below).
 86. One man dead, another seriously injured in Gander-area snowmobile accident
Police in central Newfoundland are investigating a fatal snowmobile accident in the remote woods near Gander early this morning, March 20, 2010. 
Police say a 63-year-old man from Gander was killed, while a 44-year-old male passenger was also seriously injured.
It took some time for police to get to the accident scene in Jonathan's Pond, near Whitman's Island, because it was only accessible by snowmobile. The 63-year-old man was declared dead at the scene, while the younger man was sent to hospital to be treated for his injuries.

85.  We have another death in BC.
20 Mar 2010 ...
Around 4 p.m. Friday an avalanche hit a group of snowmobilers one km past Eagle Pass Peak on Eagle Pass Mountain. The RCMP said the search had ended for the night and would resume Saturday morning on Eagle Pass Mountain west of Revelstoke, not far from where two snowmobilers were killed and 31 were injured in a slide last weekend.
Yesterday's slide was a Catagory 4, which the Canadian Avalanche Centre says is powerful enough to destroy a railway car.

Rescue teams -- including Search and Rescue from Revelstoke, RCMP Southeast District Air 3, and RCMP avalanche-trained service dogs -- were dispatched but called off at dusk. They were to resume at dawn today (Saturday, March 20). The BC Coroners Service is investigating.

84. The body of a 24-year-old snowmobiler was recovered Monday from the Churchill River at Stanley Mission after the man and a youth went missing Sunday when their machine was driven into open water.
The snowmobile, ridden by the 24-year-old and a 16-year-old boy, went into the icy water at about 6 p.m. Sunday, RCMP said Monday. The man's body was found at about 2 p.m. Monday and an autopsy has been ordered.
The pair was travelling from the Stanley Mission reserve to the Trinity Lutheran Church.
"Initial investigation indicates that the 16-year-old passenger was found in the open water and it is believed he was pulled to safety by people who were in the immediate vicinity at the time of the incident," police said.

83. 'Hundreds caught in B.C. avalanche; 2 dead, at least 12 injured '

Avalanche kills 2 at B.C. snowmobile event

Interactive Map: Recent avalanche deaths in British Columbia(2010)

Dangerous backcountry in BC
  • 2 - Confirmed deaths in the slide
  • 30 - Injured, including three seriously and one in critical condition
  • 150-200 - People directly in the path of the avalanche
  • 4 - Search-and-rescue teams at the site of the avalanche
  • 5 - Canine units deployed
  • 3 - Helicopters
  • 4 - Years the Big Iron Shootout has been held
  • 4 - Avalanche deaths in British Columbia backcountry so far this winter
  • 26 - Deaths in 2008-2009
  • 13 - Deaths in 2007-2008
  • 148 - Deaths over the past 11 years

82. Woman killed in snowmobile crash

NORTH BAY — Wed., March 3rd == A 29-year-old St. Thomas woman died Wednesday after her snowmachine struck a tree. Ontario Provincial Police say Kristy Johnson was southbound on Trail 81 in Perry Township when she lost control on a curve, left the trail and hit the tree.
She was pronounced dead at the scene.
A post-mortem is to be conducted today in Bracebridge.

Also assisting at the scene were Huntsville OPP, the coroner, ambulance personnel and Perry Township Fire Department.

81. Un motoneigiste perd la vie dans la Réserve faunique des ...

A snowmobiler was killed Friday, March 5th, in the Laurentides Wildlife Reserve, between Quebec City and Saguenay-Lac-Saint-Jean.

Réserve faunique des Laurentide: Collision mortelle entre une voiture et une motoneige

Réserve faunique des Laurentides - Collision mortelle entre une voiture et une motoneige The 62-year-old man died after crossing the two north-bound lanes, going over the median, and then onto the first of the two south bound lanes. He was hit by a car driven by a 38-year old woman. A 6-year old was taken to hospital, as well as the woman. I presume the child was in the car, but the article does not say. What a shock for the woman who was driving the car, as well as the child.
According to initial assumptions made by investigators of the Surete du Quebec, the victim was followed another snowmobiler. They were trying to cross Route 175 at an unauthorized location.
Other snowmobilers were willing to go to Auberge Le Relais, and rather than go to the marked crossing, located a few miles away, they chose this path, a choice that has been fatal.

Other snowmobilers at the scene, however, have indicated that it was illegal to cross at this location. What is happening, with snowroads becoming inaccessible to sledders, they are taking dangerous routes. You can see what happens on roads in small towns in my YouTube video.

80. Bend man hurt in Elk Lake snowmobile crash KTVZ
Morgan said civilian snowmobilers brought the medics to Reed's location, ... Elk Lake Resort workers used a cargo sled pulled by a snowmobile to help medics .

79. Safety on snowmobiles stressed

Safety on snowmobiles stressed - Fort McMurray Today - Alberta, CA While snowmobiling can be a fun activity during the winter months, recent fatalites have served as a reminder of how dangerous it can be.
RCMP charged a northern Alberta man for causing a death while driving impaired today. A group of people in High Level had been snowmobiling when one fell from his vehicle and was struck by someone following behind on a snowmobile. He died at hospital. Raymond Auger, a 43-year-old High Level man, has been charged with impaired operation of a motor vehicle causing death. RCMP say they've charged Raymond Auger with impaired operation of a motor vehicle after a group of people were out snowmobiling last Saturday, east of High Level, near Highway #58. Police say one of the drivers fell from his snowmobile. It occurred, near High Level, east Fort Nelson, at about 10 o'clock Saturday. Both passersby and police helped perform CPR on the man, but he was declared dead once transported to hospital, said High Level RCMP.

On March 2, closer to home, a snowmobile collision took the life of a man about 65 kilometres up the Fort Chipewyan Winter Road. According to Wood Buffalo RCMP, the driver of a snowmobile lost control, became airborne and collided with a large tree. He was seriously injured and died on the scene. Police have yet to release further details about the incident.

77. CBC News - Edmonton - Man killed in snowmobile crash

A man was killed in northern Alberta Tuesday afternoon, March 2nd, after he lost control of his snowmobile and smashed into a tree.
And: Man dies in northern Alberta snowmobile accident‎ -

EDMONTON — RCMP are investigating after a man was killed in a snowmobile accident in northern Alberta on Tuesday afternoon.Around 4 pm, police were called
The crash occurred around 4 p.m. about 65 kilometres up the Fort Chipewyan winter road, north of Fort McMurray, and about 10 kilometres into the bush, RCMP said in a news release.
Air ambulance and police had arrived at the scene but the man died as a result of his injuries.

76. Snowmobile collision in Portage la Prairie - Community News Blog
On February 27, 2010, at about 8:30am, Portage la Prairie RCMP responded to a snowmobile collision on Crescent Lake in Portage la Prairie Manitoba.
Investigation at the scene revealed that a 52-year-old male from Portage la Prairie, who was the lone occupant of a snowmobile, appeared to be traveling East on the Crescent Lake, when he hit a snow bank and was thrown from his snowmobile. The male was taken to Winnipeg Heath Science Center for further assessment with non life threatening injures.

75. Fatal Snowmobile Crash in Huron County

Huron County has recorded its first snowmobile fatality of the winter.
The body of 64-year-old Laverne McCarter of Exeter was found near his snow machine by riders Monday night around 10'clock.
Huron OPP spokeswoman, Constable Joanna Van Meirlo says the crash should act as a reminder to snowmobilers to pay close attention to weather and trail conditions this time of year:
Van Mierlo stresses the cause of the crash hasn't been determined.

74. RCMP say snowmobiler died of head trauma

Feb. 27 ... Newfoundland - Alcohol involved in the incident. A 48-year-old Northern Peninsula man, who died Saturday evening (Feb. 27) after a snowmobile accident, died as a result of head trauma from the collision, the autopsy concluded.
On Saturday evening, St. Anthony RCMP received a call of a single snowmobile collision that occurred in Straitsview on Route 436 on the Northern Peninsula. The victim was taken to hospital in St. Anthony where he succumbed to injuries.
The name of the deceased — who was a resident of Hay Cove — has not been released.
RCMP are reminding snowmobile enthusiasts that the same penalties exist for operating any recreational motorized vehicle as exists for driving an automobile while impaired. More importantly, the loss of fine motor skills required for driving causes just as much, or more, of a risk of serious injury or death while operating a snowmobile.
A secondary contributing factor is the absence of good snowmobile conditions this year, throughout the province. On the Northern Peninsula as well, conditions are very poor with hidden rocks, lumps of ice, holes in the trails, poor ice conditions and overall poor snow conditions which should cause snowmobilers to re-evaluate the need to operate snowmobiles in the first place, or reduce speed and watch for dangerous obstacles.

72. / 73. Second snowmobiler disappears after falling through Ottawa River ice: A second snowmobiler has been lost, and presumed drowned, in the waters of Fitzroy Harbour

A second snowmobiler has been lost, and presumed drowned, in the waters of Fitzroy Harbour.
A 36-year-old man died Sunday night when his snowmobile hit open water near the Chats Falls Dam, an Ottawa River hydro station. His passenger, another 36-year-old man, managed to pull himself out of the icy water and staggered across the ice for almost two hours to find help.
Neither man has been identified by police. The incident occurred only eight days after 21-year-old Brendan Nash disappeared into the water while riding a snowmobile between Quyon and Fitzroy Harbour.

71. Alcohol and snowmobiles don’t mix: police

Source: Hope Standard

Hope Search and Rescue volunteers spent the early morning hours, Tuesday February 16, coming to the rescue of another injured snowmobile rider in the Coquihalla Lakes region.

According to a police press release, two males, both of Maple Ridge, had been snowmobiling in the Britton Creek area while reportedly under the influence of alcohol. One male became injured and the other was able to ride out of the area to get help.

Hope Search and Rescue were able to locate the injured male, who was transported by ambulance to the Fraser Canyon hospital.

There was a fatal snowmobile crash northeast of yesterday afternoon.

FROM: Grey County O.P.P.
(Southgate Twp, ON) – On Thursday, February 25th, 2010 at 3:32pm, officers from Grey County O.P.P. responded to a report of a snowmobile collision on Southgate Road 41 near Grey Road 9 in Southgate Township (northeast of Mount Forest, ON ). The collision occurred when a snowmobile travelling westbound crossed Southgate Road 41 and was struck by a northbound van.

Paramedics from Grey County E.M.S. and firefighters from Mount Forest Fire Department also responded to the scene. The driver of the snowmobile, Ross HAMILTON 76-years-old of Mount Forest, Ontario was transported to Durham Hospital where he succumbed to his injuries and was pronounced deceased.
The driver of the van was not injured.

(CHATSWORTH, Ont.) – Grey County O.P.P. attended to an accident involving a snowmobile and a car after which the snowmobile fled the scene.

At 3:30 pm on February 11, 2010 a motor vehicle was south bound on Side Road 55 in the Municipality of Grey Highlands when an east bound black Bombadier snowmobile exiting OFSC trail # B111 pulled out in front of the southbound vehicle. The car struck the snowmobile and drove over its cowling and skis.

When the male driver of the snowmobile was aware that police were called, he started his snowmobile and fled eastbound on Trail B111 and was followed by two other snowmobiles that were traveling with him. The driver of the vehicle was able to get partial numbers of the snowmobiles involved. Other passing snowmobiles on the trail witnessed the three suspect snowmobiles down the trail from the accident. Police are following up on evidence at the scene including the partial numbers of the snowmobiles and photographs. The snowmobile will have damage to the cowling and skis.

Anyone with information that might assist in this investigation is asked to contact Grey County O.P.P. or Crime Stoppers. Police are asking the driver of the snowmobile to contact police.

68. Search continues for snowmobiler

After two days of searching, a young man who fell into the St. Lawrence River has yet to be found following a snowmobile crash. Donald Rockburn, 24, is said to have been driving his snowmobile on the icy river Monday night (Feb. 22) when the sled hit a bad patch and broke through north of Stanley Island, south of Summerstown in South Glengarry Township.
Akwesasne Mohawk Police Service (AMPS) have taken the lead in the search operation with the help of an OPP search and recovery unit based in Gravenhurst, Ont., and the Hogansburg Akwesasne Volunteer Fire Department (HAVFD) search and recovery unit. The HAVFD unit brought out its air boat to find Rockburn's snowmobile, then take OPP divers out to search for the missing Cornwall man, who is believed to be a native of Renfrew.They will resume the search on Thursday, Feb. 25.

67. Charges laid during OPP snowmobile patrols

Feb. 22, 2010-- Espanola Ontario Provincial Police laid five Liquor Licence Act charges and issued five warnings while doing motorized snow vehicle patrols on LaCloche and Panache lakes on Friday. A number of sleds, ATVs and cottages were checked.
Injuries and deaths that are related to snowmobiling can be prevented," states a press release from Ontario Provincial Police. "Contributing factors in these collisions include excessive speed, thin ice, unsafe operation, inattention and operating under the influence of alcohol."

66. Snowmobiler killed near Powder King

Feb. 21, 2010--A Fort St. John man has been killed in a snowmobiling accident near Powder King Ski Resort.
Mackenzie RCMP report the accident occurred in an area known as Old Friend on Sunday. The man was 'high-marking' with friends on a hill known as the 141 Hill. On his way down, the snowmobile hit a rock, launching the snowmobile and rider into the air. The man became separated from the snowmobile and, when he landed, hit another rock. He sustained internal injuries.
The man was transported by helicopter to Mackenzie hospital where he died as a result of his injuries.
The deceased is a 64-year-old man from Fort St. John. His name is being withheld pending notification of next of kin.

65. Snowmobiler dies in fall near US border

Feb. 21, 2010--A Whitehorse woman died in a snowmobiling accident near the United States border north of Skagway on Sunday.
The 32-year-old snowmobiler fell several feet after cresting a small hill near the Fraser Customs station just after 3:30 p.m., according to an RCMP news release.
"The driver of the snowmobile was cresting a hill and the snowmobile dropped a couple of feet and came to a sudden stop as a result," Sgt. Don Rogers told CBC News on Monday.
"The driver was thrown forward into the steering mechanism, and the driver was unable to be revived." The passenger was not injured.

64. Search back on for snowmobiler in Lake of Two Mountains: Philippe Durand missing in lake after saving wife, two children

63. Oshawa man killed in snowmobile crash on Chandos Lake

NORTH KAWARTH Twp. — An Oshawa man died Saturday night after his snowmobile crashed into a tree on an island on Chandos Lake, between Aspley and Coe Hill.
Bohdan Krawek, 58, was operating a snowmobile in the early evening of Feb. 20, 2010, Peterborough County OPP report.
He departed his Chandos Lake cottage for a short snowmobile ride. He was reported missing by his son approximately four hours later.
A search by OPP Emergency Response Team discovered the Krawek at 2:30 a.m. on Feb. 21, 2010 against a tree on a nearby island. The deceased had entered onto the frozen lake from a nearby trail and collided with a tree on an island.
The scene was attended by the Coroner and an autopsy is scheduled for Monday 22 Feb, 22, 2010.
Related posts:

62. Poor lighting may be factor in Quebec snowmobiler's death

Ya think? Or maybe driving too quickly in the dark, on unfamiliar territory?

QUEBEC - The Canadian press is reporting that a 29 year old male snowmobiler was killed Monday night (Feb. 15, 2010) in Montérégie after colliding with a concrete support pillar.

According to the Surete du Quebec, the victim, a resident of Clarenceville, was alone on his machine on Missisquoi Bay near the water's edge when he collided with the pillar used to support a dock shortly after 11pm. The victim was ejected from his snowmobile and transported to hospital where he was pronounced dead.

Police believe that insufficient lighting along the quay where the crash occurred contributed to the fatality.

61. Fatal accident , BAY MILLS, The SOO, MI

The Bay Mills Police Department (The Soo, Michigan, US) has concluded its investigation into a Saturday accident that claimed the life of a five-year-old Canadian girl.

According to reports, Ian Galbraith, 37, of , Ont. was traveling on the snowmobile with his daughter, Kieleigh Gavin-Galbraith when he pulled into the path of a northbound Jeep traveling on Lakeshore Drive, west of Brimley on Saturday, February 13.

Both occupants were thrown from the sled. Kieleigh was transported to War Memorial Hospital where she succumbed to her injuries. Ian remains hospitalized. Condolences to the family. Such a tragedy.

60. Alberta man named victim of BC avalanche

Vancouverite - ‎Sunday, Feb. 14, 2010
REVELSTOKE, BC –The Alberta man killed in an avalanche on Eagle Mountain near Revelstoke has been identified as 42-year-old Edward Kenneth Sage. A group of eight sledders were riding on Eagle Mountain, about 420 km west of Calgary, when two of the machines got stuck. He was killed when 100-tons of snow slid down during an avalanche near Eagle Mountain. Sage was buried under about a metre of snow and it took his friends about an hour to find his body and dig him out.

59. Ontario Snowmobiler Killed in Crash
OTTAWA - Renfrew OPP are investigating after a snowmobiler was killed Saturday evening when he lost control of his machine in the township of Admaston-Bromley.
Sgt. Gary Switch said the 48-year-old man was thrown from the machine at about 6:30 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 13, after the snowmobile veered off the trail he had been traveling on near Culhane Rd.

Ontario Provincial Police say William Walsh of Elizabeth-Kitley Township was fatally injured when he struck a culvert and was thrown from his machine.
Speed and alcohol are still being considered possible factors in the crash. The investigation is ongoing.
Anyone with information is asked to contact Ontario Provincial Police at 613-432-3211.
While investigating a fatal snowmobile collision on Culhane Road in the Township of Admaston/ Bromley on February 13 at approx. 7:55p.m., Renfrew OPP officers learned one of the other snowmobile drivers who were travelling with the deceased had been drinking.
The male failed a roadside screening test, and was arrested for driving over 80 mgs. Following tests at the detachment, William Tange, age 48, of Brockville was charged with driving over 80 mgs. He was released from custody on a promise to appear in court in Renfrew on March 24.

58. Teenager, 15, dies in Happy Valley - Goose Bay snowmobile crash

Feb. 14, 2010 NEWFOUNDLAND - RCMP in Happy Valley - Goose Bay are investigating a fatal snowmobile crash which occurred Saturday night, killing an area teenager.

At about 7:50 pm the RCMP in Happy Valley - Goose Bay responded to a call of a snowmobile crash on the snowmobile trail within town. A 15-year-old male resident of Happy Valley - Goose Bay was riding a snowmobile on the trail with friends and hit a guy wire.

The male was taken to hospital and later pronounced dead. Police are continuing to investigate the crash, although neither foul play nor alcohol are suspected to be factors in the crash.


(KINCARDINE, ON.) – Feb. 12, 2010 - The South Bruce OPP are at the scene of a serious snowmobile crash near Mildmay, Ontario. The driver of the snowmobile failed to negotiate a curve in the trail and struck a tree. The driver of the snowmobile has been transported to London hospital with life threatening injuries. The OPP Technical Traffic Collision Investigation unit has been called in to assist with the investigation.

56. Snowmobiler charged with attack on skier

A19-year-old snowmobiler has been charged with assaulting a cross-country skier in Constance Bay, Ont., police in Ottawa said Friday. After interviewing several witnesses, police said in a statement that they have charged Colin Cox of Carp, Ont., with assault.

55. Snowmobile head-on crash kills Ottawa man
Feb. 8, 2010 -- A 10-year-old boy helped save the life of his father following a snowmobile collision in western Quebec that killed another man.
The boy's 45-year-old father survived the crash in Quyon, Que., around 6 p.m. Monday that fatally injured 44-year-old Simon Horn, confirmed Martin Fournel of Des-Collines-de-l"Outaouis municipal police Tuesday. Horn was from Woodlawn, a village that is now part of Ottawa's western outskirts
In Quebec, the minimum age for operating a snowmobile is 16. At the time of the collision, the boy had been illegally driving his own snowmobile behind his father's. He ran for help following the crash. In doing so, Fournel said he may have saved his father's life.

54. City teen killed in mishap
Sudbury Star

Mike Trevisiol, 17, died in a mishap Sunday evening, Feb. 7, 2010, on Ramsey Lake.
Greater Sudbury Police say witnesses indicated the vicitim was alone on a snowmobile at about 6 p.m. on Sunday when he appeared to lose control as he approached an island on the lake near Portage Avenue.
He suffered serious injuries. Nearby, people who were ice fishing contacted 911 and provided assistance to the victim. He was taken to hospital, where he later died.
On a safety note, Const. Lapalme (OPP) said it's critical that snowmobilers not outrun their lights at night in order to avoid being surprised by something without warning. He was wearing a helmet, but not on a groomed trail.

Sunday's fatal accident was not the first in the northeast this snowmobiling season:

* Mathieu Martin, 16, of Sturgeon Falls was driving his snowmobile on Lake Nipissing about 2:30 on Jan. 23 when his snowmobile struck a large bump. Martin, who was wearing a helmet, fell off and struck his head on the ice.

There have also been two serious snowmobile accidents in the Sudbury District so far this winter:
* On Jan. 7, a 51-year-old Greater Sudbury man was a passenger on a sled (not a snowmobile) being towed by another snowmobile on Lake Panache when the sled struck a pressure crack. The man, who was not wearing a helmet, was thrown from the sled. He suffered a broken arm and wrist, and spinal and head injuries.
* On Jan. 22, an Alban man was charged with impaired driving and blowing over after a snowmobile struck a pickup truck in that Sudbury East community.
The driver was injured.

50. Snowmobiler badly hurt in Limerick Twp

Source: Peterborough Examiner Sat., Feb. 6, 2010

A 36-year-old Peterborough man suffered major injuries in a snowmobile collision in Limerick Township, Bancroft OPP said.

Police said the man's snowmobile struck a tree Saturday while travelling on Limerick Lake, about 30 km south of Bancroft. The man was taken to Quinte Healthcare North Hastings in Bancroft. Police are continuing to investigate. Tweed, just south of this area, is where an arrest was made on two sexual assaults and two deaths. I cannot imagine how hard the agencies are working in this area.

49. Snowmobiler dies in Almaguin area

McMurrich/Monteith Twp. - On Sunday the 7th of February, 2010, at about 11:55 am., four snowmobiles were travelling on the OFSC “D” trail in McMurrich/Monteith Township.
SPRUCEDALE – A father of two died of his injuries after losing control of his snowmobile on Sunday.
Erik Rasanen, 28, of Whitby, was travelling at the rear of a group of four snowmobiles on the Ontario Federation of Snowmobile Clubs’ (OFSC) D trail between Axe Lake and Yearley roads around noon when he crested a hill, lost control and struck a tree. The rear snowmobile crested a hill, lost control and struck a tree. The operator of this snowmobile suffered fatal injuries.

At the scene of this fatal collision were Almaguin OPP, paramedics, Sprucedale Fire Department, North Bay Technical Traffic Collision Investigative Unit and the North Bay Forensics Unit.
[Bless them for all that they do. Such useless tragedies.]

48. Five Quebecers die in snowmobile accidents

Posted 2010/02/08 Quebec police are urging snowmobilers to ride safely and respect off-road speed limits after deadly accidents on the weekend claimed the lives of five people in separate snowmobiling accidents between Saturday and Sunday in different parts of the province.
  • 48. A 40-year-old man died after he lost control on a snowmobiling trail in the Laurentians on Saturday.
  • 47. On the same day, a 21-year-old in central Quebec was killed when he hit a tree and was thrown from his snowmobile.
  • 46. A 31-year-old man in Saguenay died after a similar collision.
  • 45. On Sunday, a 56-year-old woman was killed in the Saguenay region after she was pinned down by her vehicle.
  • 44. The fifth victim, a 52-year-old man, died after his jacket got tangled in his snowmobile track while he was doing repairs.

43. Dead sledder new to sport: OPP

TRAGEDY: 'A friend of his was actually directly behind him when this happened'

Sat. Feb. 6, 2010
Snowmobile crash kills man, 57, near Barrie. Third fatality in the region in 48 hours. Barrie OPP are investigating a fatal crash that has claimed the life of a 57 year old man. Police and EMS were called. The man left the trail resulting in the collision with the tree. The victim was rushed to hospital in Barrie where he was later pronounced dead. An autopsy has been scheduled for tomorrow.

42. NEW BRUNSWICK - District 7 RCMP is investigating a fatal snowmobile collision which occurred on a snowmobile trail near Benton Road on Friday February 5, 2010, shortly after 8:30 pm (i.e., in the dark). The operator of a snowmobile collided with a second snowmobile which was parked on the side of the trail.

41.Teen came to aid other snowmobiler before crash
St. Catharines Standard
According to police, 17-year-old Brandon Downes, of Barrie, was driving a 2007 Skidoo 500 after a 25-year-old Oro-Medonte Township man called him, telling him that his sled had malfunctioned on an Ontario Federation of Snowmobile Clubs (OFSC) trail, west of Barrie.
"It's my understanding that the 25-year-old man from Oro-Medonte was by himself on the trails and his sled broke down," said Huronia West OPP Const, Mark Kinney. "Then he called around for assistance (on his cellphone). I can't say whether they were friends, but he phoned (Downes), so he must know him. They were obviously close enough that he would come up and help him, which he did."

Downes picked up the other rider and was southbound when, for reasons that have yet to be determined, the snowmobile left the trail and struck a tree.
Police said the trail was groomed, but that there was a minimal amount of snow.

40. (BRACEBRIDGE, ON) Friday, Feb. 5, 2010 At 11:20 a.m. police were called to South Gibson Lake Road where a snowmobile left the roadway and crashed. The operator has been identified as 54-year old Stephen PINK of Mississauga and was pronounced dead at the scene. This is the second fatal MSV crash in Central region in the past 24 hours. The victim was wearing a protective helmet. Speed and alcohol are being investigated as factors in the accident.

39. Education For The Driving Masses: 17 year old dead after ...

Feb. 4, 2010 - - A 17-year-old, Huronia West OPP have identified the teen as Brandon Downes, 17, of Barrie. The OPP investigation revealed that Downes was driving a yellow and black 2007 Skidoo 500 as he came to the aid of a 25-year-old male snowmobiler from Oro-Medonte Township, whose machine had broken down on the trail.

Downes had picked up the other rider and they were riding southbound when, for yet to be determined reasons, the snowmobile left the Ontario Federation of Snowmobile Clubs (OFSC) trail and struck a tree around 9 p.m. The passenger on the snowmobile suffered a broken leg and was taken to RVH.
OPP said the trail was a groomed Ontario Federation of Snowmobile Clubs' trail but there was minimal snow on the trail.
He couldn't say whether speed or alcohol was a factor nor could he say if either man was wearing a helmet.

38. Busy Weekend For Sledding
Th Jan. 30/31, 2010 weekend, -35°c weather did not deter activity on the snowmobile trails as over 2200 snowmobiles were checked for safety and regulation compliance. A single crash left one snowmobiler injured when he became disoriented in bad weather and crashed into a hydro pole guy-wire.

– On Saturday January 30, 2010 Huntsville OPP was notified of a second snow machine into a tree on the OFSC trail.
Around 12:30pm Huntsville OPP attended OFSC trail D near Stephenson Rd #4 in the town of Huntsville. A 43 year old Mississauga female had lost control of her sled, driving off the trail and striking a tree. The driver was not injured as a result of the crash.

36. B93 News: Another Snowmobile Fatal
A 49-year-old man from Ojibways of Onigaming First Nation - Aboriginal Communities
was killed Friday morning (Jan. 29, 2010) after the snowmachine he was operating came into collision with a truck on an ice road on Sabaskong Bay on Lake of the Woods. See also: - News Center., Ice Road Fatal
Members of the OPP's Technical Traffic Collision Investigation Unit have been called in to look into the cause of the accident.

A Port Sydney (Huntsville), Ontario, man is in critical condition after a snowmobile crash. Huntsville O.P.P. says the man was out on the trail overnight Friday and hit a tree. He was found at ten Saturday morning by other snowmobilers. He has been airlifted to Sunnybrook Hospital and is listed in critical condition. Police continue to investigate the crash. Sometime overnight a 39 year old Port Sydney male was traveling on the trail when he struck a tree. The male was located before 10:00am by other snow mobiles traveling in the area. The male was transported to Huntsville Hospital, is listed in critical condition, and is being airlifted to Sunnybrook Medical Facilities in Toronto.

Huntsville OPP along with Central Region Traffic Reconstructionist is continuing the investigation into this crash.

34. Local man killed in head-on snowmobile collision

29 Jan 2010 ...Aaron Hyatt, 33, was killed when his snowmachine collided with a second snowmobile around 8:30 pm on a trail on

Couchiching First Nation. A post-mortem had been scheduled for today at the Thunder Bay Regional Health Sciences Centre. Fort Frances OPP continue to investigate the accident. A female passenger, along with the male driver of the second snowmachine, were taken to hospital with non-life threatening injuries, police said.

33. Central Nfld Teen Killed in Snowmobile Crash

Snowmobile crash fatality

Fri., Jan. 29, 2010
A 15-year-old girl from Norris Arm has died as a result of a snowmobile crash. RCMP were called to respond to the scene in Norris Arm South at approximately 4:30 on Friday afternoon.

R.I.P Sarah Tuck [Facebook Group]
Central Nfld Teen Killed in Snowmobile Crash

Alex Bursey was with his girlfriend Sarah Tuck when the snowmobile she was driving crashed Jan. 29. (CBC)

Alex Bursey, 16, said Tuck was alone on her machine at the time, and just before the accident had passed him on a straight stretch of a woods' road.
He said Tuck was thrown from the snowmobile and struck the side of a piece of forestry equipment known as a forwarder, a long truck-like vehicle used to carry logs from the woods to the side of the road.
Bursey said she hit a metal pole attached to the machine.
Tuck, who was wearing a helmet that flew off during the crash, suffered severe head injuries and died before making it to hospital.

32. Snowmobiler killed in collision with train

12 Jan., 2010

Temiskaming Shores, Ontario Canada - Ontario Provincial Police continues its investigation into a fatal motorized snow vehicle collision that occurred at 9:10 a.m. this morning, January 12, 2010, in Dymond Township. The snowmobile driver, 19 year old Jessy DESROCHERS of Hudson Township was pronounced dead at the scene.

The lone male snowmobiler was traveling west in Temiskaming on an opened OFSC trail and failed to stop for an approaching north bound ONR freight train.

31. Young snowmobiler dies on Lake Nipissing

Jan. 23
A 16-year-boy from Sturgeon Falls died Saturday after he fell off his snowmachine on Lake Nipissing.

Police were called around 2:30 p.m. and discovered a 16 year old Sturgeon Falls teen. Police say Mathieu Martin was driving his snowmobile when he struck a large bump and fell off the machine, hitting his head on the ice. He was wearing a helmet and alcohol isn't said to have been involved.

30. Fatal snowmobile accident in Magnetawan

Magnetawan, ON - Police at the Almaguin Highlands OPP detachment are currently investigating a fatal snowmobile collision that occurred at approximately 2:30 a.m. on Poverty Bay in the Municipality of Magnetawan on Saturday 23 January 2010. ...

The collision claimed the life of Jeffrey CARROLL (29) of Vittoria, Ontario, when the snowmobile he was driving struck a tree along the shoreline.

CARROLL and several friends had been out snowmobiling on the river prior to the collision.

29. Snowmobile accident claims one life

Jan. 23, 2010
Portage Emergency Services said the accident happened around 3 am south of Angle Road on the south side of the Trans-Canada Highway near Portage la Prairie.

28. Airborne incident
MAGNETAWAN – A snowmobile sustained only minimal damage after flying over a rock cut and into a snow filled ditch on Jan. 13 around 5 p.m.
The driver complained of sore ribs but no ambulance was called to the scene of the incident that took place on Hwy. 520 near Jackson’s Road.
A tow truck was needed on scene to remove the vehicle from the ditch.

27. Sled hits culvert
SPRUCEDALE – A snowmobile driver was thrown from his machine after striking an exposed culvert on Hwy. 518 about eight km west of Sprucedale at the Seguin Trail on Jan. 16 around 8:30 a.m.

The driver was transported to Huntsville Hospital with minor injuries. No charges were laid.

26. Snowmobiler died trying to save friend
Mon., Jan. 18, 2010
Wearing proper equipment and appropriately dressed, a 30-year-old died while riding in the mountains near Sicamous, B.C., late Monday evening. There with three friends. One friend's snowmobile somehow became stuck prior to the avalanche, RCMP Sgt. Carl Vinet said. The friend suffered two broken legs and had to be airlifted out of the area for treatment at a Kamloops hospital. Two other friends were not hurt and managed to drive out of the area on their snowmobiles.

25. Gryphons goalie on the mend after Christmas Eve accident
a near miss
Friends and family who were there when he lost control of his ride have filled him in about the crash that could have just as easily ended his 24-year-old life as it did leave him sore and bedridden...Couture made a turn. His skis caught a rut — “or something in the ground.” His snowmobile flipped. His cousin’s girlfriend was tossed into a nearby snow bank. Couture was thrown violently into a tree.

24. Two GTA men killed in Scugog accident

18 Jan 2010 ... Grzegorz Wawryniuk, 61, known as Greg, and Wesley Sullivan, 56 of Whitby, died Saturday night when thrown from a snowmobile on Lake Scugog's shore, near Lindsay, Ontario.

23. 19-year-old woman died in Amherstburg, south of Windsor, after a snowmobile became airborne and landed in a ditch.
Corey Meloche, who was a passenger on the machine, was taken to a Detroit hospital, where she died of her injuries. Police said the 18-year-old driver of the snowmobile is charged with impaired driving causing bodily harm.

22. Man injured in Port Perry snowmobile accident

10 Jan 2010 ... A 23-year-old man is in hospital with a with a broken leg, wrist, hip and pelvis, after a snowmobile slammed into a truck on Lake Scugog early Saturday morning. Durham Regional Police report the man was driving the snowmobile around 3 a.m. on Jan. 9 and he ran into a truck parked near an ice-fishing hut.

21. New Brunswick - N.B. teen dies in snowmobile accident

10 Jan 2010 ... A New Brunswick teenager is dead and his father seriously injured following a snowmobile accident Saturday night in Millerton, southwest of Miramichi. Devon O'Donnell, 16, of Lower Derby and his father were in an open field near the Pipeline trail, off Williamstown Road, when their snowmobiles collided with a barbed-wire fence about 6 p.m., said Const. Jonathan Cormier of District 6 RCMP.

20. Man, 21, dies in snowmobile accident
Sunday, 8:35 p.m., Jan. 10, 2010
A 21-year-old, wearing a helmet, hit his head on an object, believed to be a mailbox.
A young Peterborough, Ontario, man died in a crash near Havelock, Ont. Provincial police said at the time the man had been travelling along a highway shoulder when he struck a mailbox and was thrown onto the roadway.

19. Snowmobile-riding father, son missing
Sainte-Marthe-sur-le-Lac say the 38-year-old man and his 13-year-old son were last seen Sunday, Jan. 10, 2010 on Lake of Two Mountains, northwest of Montreal. The two had been ice-fishing with friends Sunday afternoon and left the group on snowmobile to return to their home in Île-Bizard.
Authorities suspect the ice may have given under the weight of the snowmobile and riders. A police helicopter found a hole in the ice 300 m from shore. Search efforts resumed Monday morning after sunrise.
UPDATE: the boy's body has been found. The father's still missing.

18. Man dies helping snowmobilers cross road
Sunday, Jan. 10, 2010
A pedestrian was struck and killed by a vehicle in Winchester, Ont.,
A 46-year old man died while trying to assist some snowmobilers on Sunday afternoon in Winchester, Ont.. He was hit by an eastbound vehicle as he tried to help a group of snowmobilers cross the road, around 5:30 p.m. in the community about 40 kilometres southeast of Ottawa.

17. Man seriously hurt in snowmobile accident on Lake Panache Thursday ...

9 Jan 2010 ... A Greater Sudbury man is recovering in hospital following a snowmobile accident on Lake Panache Thursday.

16. Area man killed in snowmobile accident

A Bonnechere Valley man was killed in a snowmobile accident near Eganville (near Ottawa) Friday, Jan. 8.
Jason Parent, 33, of Lake Clear, was operating a 2006 Skidoo when he collided with a tree stump in the area of Lake Clear at around 3:30 p.m. The impact ejected Mr. Parent from the vehicle. Lake Clear is situated 10 kilometres west of Eganville.

15. Snowmobiler killed in Lake Simcoe collision

Jan. 1 ONTARIO - A Georgina man is dead after the snowmobile he was riding crashed into a pickup truck on Lake Simcoe. A 22-year-old Keswick man, on New Year's Day at about 10 p.m., was driving a 2008 Ski-Doo Mach Z 800 at a high rate of speed south on the lake near the east shoreline.

14. One man dead in B.C. avalanche

ROSSLAND, B.C. – An Alberta man in his early 30s died Monday afternoon after being buried in an avalanche in the Mount Mackie in Rossland, in the B.C. Interior, RCMP confirmed Monday evening. One person dead in BC avalanche‎ - If the man hadn't been thrown against a tree in the "terrain trap," where ... Last year, eight snowmobilers died in an avalanche near Fernie, BC

The police statement said the man was one of four, all in their 30s, from Alberta and B.C. who had gone into the area via snowmobile for backcountry downhill skiing. The four were making a skiing descent when the avalanche struck; three escaped the slide.

13. Haliburton snowmobiler's body found drowned

2 Jan 2010 ... The body of a 43-year old was found in open water on Redstone Lake in Haliburton Friday night. The OPP, firefighters and paramedics searched Friday night and Saturday morning before finding the body. The OPP dive team recovered the body of the man just before noon January 2nd. Awful conditions for rescue teams. Imagine family members and friends sitting around waiting for the body to be recovered. It is an agony, as Victim Service teams tell us.
Police said the victim owned a cottage in the area, near Minden.
He was with a group of snowmobilers, police said. But he headed out on his own before the others were ready, just after 7 p.m. ET. in the dark. When he didn't come back, others in the group followed his tracks, and found him in a patch of open water, police said in a news release.

12. British woman dies when her snowmobile crashes down hill in eastern B.C. ...

Dec. 29, 2009 GOLDEN, B.C. — Alana Nicol [Facebook Memorial Group]
A 58-year-old woman was snowmobiling with her husband, adult son, her daughter-in-law and a guide near Beaver Foot Forest Road area east of Golden when she failed to negotiate a treacherous turn and plunged down a 60-foot embankment. The woman struck a tree 60-feet below the ridge where she had been snowmobiling with her family.

11. Area snowmobilers urged to be patient until more snow arrives ...

Dec. 28, 2009 Four in near miss: near Peterborough. Four snowmobiles were travelling together in a group when their machines went into the water at Chandos Lake. All four people were removed from the water and no injuries were reported, however their snow machines were still in the lake. The ice simply isn't strong enough in many places. The warm temperatures we had in Ontario melted much shoreline ice as snow on land melted into lakes.

10. Snowmobile crash kills Esterhazy, Sask., man
Dec. 28, 2009 At around 1:35 p.m. CT on Monday, a 21-year-old man was driving a snowmobile on private property when he struck an embankment and was injured, the RCMP said.
The cause of the accident is still under investigation but alcohol was not a factor, the RCMP said.

9. Regina man dies in snowmobile crash
SASKATCHEWAN (CBC) - Dec. 21, 2009 The RCMP has identified Jason Lee Habinski as the man who died in a snowmobile crash northwest of Regina on the weekend. Habinski, 33, died when the snowmobile he was on collided with a pickup truck on the frozen surface of Last Mountain Lake Saturday afternoon. A second man, 32, who was also on the snowmobile survived. Neither man was wearing a helmet, the RCMP said.

8. Sledder hurt in crash near Orillia

Sunday, Dec. 20
A 30-year-old man was taken to Orillia Soldiers' Memorial Hospital, Central Ontario, with serious, but non-life threatening injuries after the snowmobile he was driving collided with a pickup truck late Sunday afternoon, said Orillia OPP Const. Addison Hunter.
In small towns we often see them drive on sidewalks and in the streets. Terribly dangerous.
The Orillia Packet writes:
Yet, you'd think careless driving laws apply to snowmobiles, too. It seems to happen often, with people operating vehicles in large groups...

Like this one:

One man was killed after falling off a snowmobile Saturday afternoon, and getting struck by another machine. The accident happened in Oro Medonte Saturday afternoon. Police call it a tragic accident, and say no charges will be laid.
( I cannot view the video, and cannot determine the date of this news item, but I assume it was Dec. 12th!)

6. Hawk Junction Man Drowns in Snowmobile Accident

12 Dec 2009 ... Wawa-news has confirmed that a Hawk Junction man has drowned in a snowmobile accident yesterday. They confirm that the snowmobile went through the ice of Manitowik Lake, east of Lake Superior. The search had to be postponed due the the massive snowstorm that screamed through the province.

5. Little Grand Rapids Man Dead After Snowmobile Accident

9 Dec 2009 ... Global News. A 43-year old Little Grand Rapids man is dead after he lost control of his snowmobile Tuesday morning.

4. Beeton/Loretto men injured in sled crash

Dec 01, 2008
A pair of young men from Beeton and Loretto are currently in hospital with serious injuries following a snowmobile crash late Friday night near Everett.
It was about 11 p.m. when emergency personnel were called to the scene on private property west of Everett after the snowmobile being operated by 20-year-old James Sledz of Loretto slammed into a hydro pole. Sledz had a passenger, 19-year-old Logan Tackaberry from Beeton who was also seriously injured in the crash. Two injuries.

3. Snowmobilers survive Frisby Ridge avalanche
Also: Snowmobiler in surgery after being crushed under avalanche at Deadman's Creek
Nov. 23, 2009
Survivor says sledder was not breathing, looked like "blue and purple corpse"
Four snowmobilers barely survived an avalanche in the Frisby Ridge area that left two of them trapped under the snow while their friends frantically tried to rescue them late Tuesday afternoon.
Buried over his head by a series of avalanches. Completely covered in snow for more than 10 minutes, he was close to death. Meanwhile, his friend Riley Tuplin was a metre away, screaming in pain as his leg was caught between a snowmobile and tree stump. Fortunately for the two of them, their two companions, Jeff Hodgson and Randy Kaup, emerged from the avalanche uncovered and were frantically working to dig them out.

2. Two snowmobilers found after spending the night
Nov. 10, 2009
Two snowmobilers were found safe and sound Tuesday morning after a mechanical breakdown forced them to spent Monday night on Frisby Ridge. The two men were eight to ten kilometres out on the trail when the breakdown occurred. Frisby Ridge is near Revelstoke, B.C., west of Banff National Park.

Sunday, Oct. 11, 2009. Edmonton, Alberta, RCMP were called about Shane Verbeek, 30, who was last seen taking his machine onto the lake around 1:30 a.m. Sunday. Such a tragedy.


Azure Islands Designs said...

Snowmobiling can be a great deal of fun but people have to drive/play safe!!!


Lorac said...

A lot of snowmobile riders don't realize the lakes and the rivers don't freeze like they used to. In the 60's and 70's we would go up to the cottage just after Christmas to spend New years there and there would be 2-3 feet of ice. Now, we are lucky to even get across by the end of January and it's often slushy!

Kahshe Cottager said...

This is a much more dangerous activity than some riders seem to believe. It is right up there with those ATVs!

Your EG Tour Guide said...

So depressing! Why do people take such risks?

Cloudia said...

one problem we don't have in Hawaii ;-)

Aloha, Friend!

Comfort Spiral

This Is My Blog - fishing guy said...

Jenn: It is always sad when people die when having fun. Drinking and driving don't mix with snowmobiles, cars or boats.

Nancy Tapley said...

This region really does rely on snowmobilers to help drive the winter economy... and they can be so much fun when you Play Safe, and Slow Down to smell the (well, not roses) but pine trees, perhaps??? We're welcoming back a group to Bondi this week who have come for 30 years for a sledding week -- they are sober when they drive, don't take foolish risks, and truly enjoy getting out on the land... Then, over at Dorset, all February, you can watch the Puddle Jumpers race across the open water. And you can watch the 'low flying aircraft' style of driving any day on roads, trails and lakes. It really does make one wonder, doesn't it?
I understand that not everyone can, or wants, to go into the bush on snowshoes or skiis... just as I understand that I am not temperamentally suited to ice fishing in a hut, but wouldn't it be wonderful if a little more common sense, rules of the road, and general courtesy to the land, other inhabitants (furry or two legged) and Forethought were to raise their heads in the sport???

Carver said...

It is sobering to think about the accidents which happened. I liked your That's my world post. Looks like a great hike and fun to have a nice meal afterwards. I didn't see a place to comment on that post so I'm commenting here.

Jenn Jilks said...

Nancy, conscientious, caring people draw like-minded spirits towards them. I am sure that you have a powerful influence on the people who stay at your resort. Unfortunately, these powerful machines are being abused by people who haven't a clue what it will cost them, and their families. Thank you for caring for both your customers and the earth; flora and fauna around you.
Thank you, Carver!

Anonymous said...

I can not support the snowmobile economy the way it is in Muskoka. I dislike the snowmobile pollution, noise, air and water (winter snowpack melts toxins into watershed in the spring). If we don't have clean air, water and soil then we have nothing. Governments can and should promote only healthy forms of recreation. Non-motorized. That is something I can support.

This Is My Blog - fishing guy said...

Jenn: How I wish they would be more careful. I think like boating alcohol and stupidity are responsible for most of the accidents.

KaHolly said...

We lost a young man through the ice a few years ago. Snowmobilers don't believe the rules apply to them. ATVers either. Something drastic needs to be done. Let's ban them all! ~karen

Anonymous said...

I currently live in Petawawa, Ontario. An area that is thriving with snowmobile activity. One thing that this province lacks is rapid response teams, designated to recover patients involved in remote snowmobile accidents. My goal is establish this locations first rapid response patient and casualty recovery unit. Who gets called to remote snowmobile accidents? Usually paramedics and firefighters who are unequipped for this type of emergency. Many snowmobilers die because of the length of time it takes for emergeny crews to access them. My goal is to reduce the number of snowmobile related deaths. Let's start with an Eastern Ontario Rapid Response Team and build on that. I am currently looking for sponsors to establish and equip this emergeny rapid response team. Glen Estabrooks

Jenn Jilks said...

Glen, good luck with that. I know that Muskoka Lakes (Volunteer!) firefighters have snowmobiles, ATVs and jetskiis. It is an important part of their work.

Carol said...

Interesting post. I am quite stunned at the number of accidents that occur from sledding too fast.