High number of rescue calls on forest service roads prompts warning from COSAR

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Rescue along forest service roads increase
Of the dozens of rescue calls Central Okanagan Search and Rescue responded to so far this year. there's one that stood out. As Victoria Femia reports - COSAR is seeing a rise in people getting stranded on forest service roads in need of a rescue – May 5, 2024

The Central Okanagan Search and Rescue (COSAR) has gone on over 30 rescue calls so far this year and is finding an unusual increase in rescues along forest service roads (FSRs).

“A lot of people were travelling the forest service roads in vehicles that shouldn’t have been on those roads and they were getting stuck or slipping off the road,” said Duane Tresnich of Central Okanagan Search and Rescue.

According to COSAR the issues come from people not being properly equipped or prepared to drive on the terrain on FSRs, as conditions can change from dry to snowy and wet at any moment.

Depending on how far out a driver is in the backcountry, a tow truck may not respond to the call, according to Tresnich.

The director of Dee Lake Lodge in Lake Country says the forest service roads heading up the lodge have caused several people to be stranded.

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“They’re always knocking on the door at the office to get pulled out,” said Towers. “There are tow straps here just because there are so many people getting stuck out here.”

COSAR says anyone planning a drive into the backcountry should be prepared.

“Make sure you have winter tires chains shovel make sure you have enough food and water in case you get stuck for a couple of days ensure you let someone know where you’re going.

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