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Three men lucky to escape Syringa-area crash with their lives

Three young men are extremely lucky to be alive today after an MVI about two-and-a-half km up Deer Park Forest Service Road yesterday.

Castlegar top cop RCMP Sgt. Darren Oelke said a 25-year-old Castlegar man was showing his two Surrey friends, 20 and 21 years old, the area Sunday afternoon.

“The truck was at the highest part of the bluff just past Syringa, where the road has two lanes and no ditches, just a several-hundred-foot cliff straight down to the water,” Oelke said. “The road isn’t very well maintained, and they hit a rock on the right-hand side of the road, and veered to the left. They hit another large rock on that side, which slowed them enough to give them time to jump out the vehicle before it plunged over the cliff and into the water.”

He said that, had they not managed to scramble out, they likely wouldn’t have survived the impact with the water.

“A fall like that would be like hitting concrete,” he said. “You can still see a little bit of white (from the truck) way down in the water.”

Police got the call at 3:52 p.m., and attended to find the three men with only minor scrapes and bruises. The truck, a brand-new 2018 Dodge Ram pick-up, will likely have to be hauled from the drink by ICBC due to environmental concerns.

“Mind you, there are lots of vehicles already down there,” Oelke said. “Those guys were so, so lucky they were able to make it out.”