(Editor’s Note: Updated with the time of the incident and information from the Creston and Canyon-Lister fire departments)
An 11-year-old boy was pronounced dead on the scene yesterday evening after he fell while playing on trusses that support Canyon Bridge, west of Creston just off Highway 3.
RCMP Staff Sgt. Bob Gollan said police, ambulance and fire department personnel were called to the scene around 6 p.m.
“Three young brothers were climbing around the trusses,” he said. “One slipped off and fell to the ground below. It was a drop of 40 to 60 feet.”
Gollan said that investigation of the death is in the hands of the BC Coroners Service and that there is no suspicion of foul play.
“This is a very dangerous practice, playing under a bridge of that height,” he said.
Emergency personnel were able to reach the accident scene by way of a trail that winds down the steep incline from Canyon-Lister Road to the Goat River below. The area contains a popular swimming hole.
Emergency responders from both Canyon-Lister Fire Department and Creston Fire Rescue attended the rope rescue incident, and closed the bridge for over four hours.
“The bridge and roadway had to be closed to be able to set up the rope system to perform the recovery of the young male.” said Creston Fire Rescue Deputy Chief Michael Moore. “He was located almost directly below the bridge, so our only vantage point to set up was on the road itself.”
Due to the boy’s death, the rescue attempt turned into a recovery operation for the firefighters.
“This becomes a somewhat longer process, and certainly much harder on the men and women who respond to such a tragic event,” said Moore. “We certainly have to ensure responder safety during a recovery operation, which slows everything down.”
Police have not yet released the name of the deceased.