UPDATED: BC Coroners Service confirms identity of two men from Alberta who died in avalanche
The BC Coroners Service has confirmed the identity of a two men who died in an avalanche near McBride on Saturday (March 21) as Curtis Fries (pronouncer: freess), aged 36, of Sherwood Park, Alberta, and Thomas Hamilton, aged 29, of Ponoka, Alberta.
Fries and Mr. Hamilton were two of a party of four who had travelled to the area near McBride to go snowmobiling.
They were snowmobiling in an area known as the Dore River Basin on the morning of March 21 when a large avalanche struck, burying Mr. Fries and Mr. Hamilton.
Other members of the party were able to dig Mr. Fries out shortly afterward but he was not able to be resuscitated. Mr. Hamilton was recovered the next day once the area had been made safe for rescue workers.
The BC Coroners Service and RCMP continue to investigate these deaths.
Two Alberta men die in avalanche while snowmobiling in BC Interior
RCMP said the bodies of two Alberta men killed in an avalanche near McBride Saturday (March 21) have been recovered.
RCMP Cpl. Dave Tyreman said the two men were snowmobiling in a party of four on the Lower Dore Mountain Range near McBride.
“An avalanche occurred, burying three of the four men,” Tyreman explained. “One was able to dig out immediately. The other two survivors dug out the third man but it was apparent that he had succumbed to his injuries and was deceased at the time of the recovery.”
Tyreman said the two survivors were not able to locate the forth individual so they went for help.
Sunday, Search and Rescue, Coroner Service and local resources implemented a recovery plan.
Tyreman said the deceased man was first removed by long line helicopter and once the avalanche technicians deemed the area to be safe, the second deceased man was located a short distance from the first in approximately 15 feet of snow.
The names of the deceased are being withheld, but are confirmed to be a 29-year-old man from Ponoka and a 36-year-old from Sherwood Park.
The accident has now been turned over to the BC Coroners Service.