Emergency crews attend the scene at Rumming Road in Lantzville where a woman had to be rescued after her car was caught in a mudslide early Monday morning. (GREG SAKAKI/The News Bulletin)

Woman rescued from upside-down vehicle in mudslide on Vancouver Island

Regional District of Nanaimo activates emergency operations

One woman needed to be rescued after a mudslide in Lantzville washed out a road in the middle of the night.

Arrowsmith Search and Rescue president Nick Rivers, who performed the rope rescue, said the scene was “very bad.”

Ten emergency vehicles were on scene at Rumming Road just off the highway right on the border between Lantzville and Nanoose Bay a little after 12:30 a.m. Monday morning. Arrowsmith and Nanaimo search and rescue and Nanoose and Lantzville fire departments were on scene.

Lantzville Fire Department deputy chief John Marment said a section of the road had been washed away and it appeared “that a vehicle then went down into the large hole left by the washout, landed upside-down and went down the slide heading towards the ocean.”

Rivers said the fire departments were able to cordon off the scene, but were unable to get to the vehicle. Rivers said when Arrowsmith Search and Rescue arrived, the team set up a quick rope system to get down to the vehicle.

“When I got down to the bottom, where the vehicle was, it was pretty interesting place to be. It wasn’t a fun place to be at all,” Rivers said. “There was a waterfall coming down onto the car which had flipped upside down. All the windows had blasted out of the car when it landed upside down.”

When Rivers got down to the bottom, he said he disconnected from the rope and found the “very lucky young lady” that was inside the vehicle. Rivers said he helped her out of the vehicle and got her hooked up to the harness and back on the rope system and to the crews waiting up top.

Marment said the vehicle was unstable during the rescue.

“Even when search and rescue were trying to get her out, the vehicle was still sliding down this mudslide.”

Rivers said once at the top, he transferred the woman to BC Ambulance Service. The woman was then transported to Nanaimo Regional General Hospital with unknown injuries.

Rivers said the only thing he could compare the scene and experience to was a disaster movie.

“There are rocks coming down hitting the car, the bank is eroding more and more and more as you’re down there and you’re dodging rocks. It was pretty stressful for a little while there,” River said.

In total, Rivers said, the rescue took a little more than an hour. The operation took place during a downpour.

article continues below

There were reports of another hill coming down nearby in Nanoose Bay – police had one southbound lane blocked near Hillview Road – and access to Northwest Bay Road was completely closed at the Nanoose Bay Petro-Canada station.

At 1:17 a.m., Drive B.C. advised of a washout 10 kilometres north of Nanaimo affecting traffic on Highway 19 in both directions. The incident was classified as “major.” Drive B.C. is also reporting water pooling on highways north of Nanaimo all the way up to Campbell River and also toward Port Alberni.

The Regional District of Nanaimo advised via social media of a landslide in Lantzville and flooding in Parksville and Whiskey Creek and has activated its Level 2 Emergency Operation Centre.

“Updates will be provided on our social media and website as needed,” the post reads.

Martindale Road in Parksville, Melrose Road in Whiskey Creek and Rumming Road are closed.

To report flooding in the RDN, contact 778-762-3553.

— with files from Lauren Collins, PQB News



editor@nanaimobulletin.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

Parents call for change to health laws after Oak Bay teen’s death

Accidental overdose has Elliot Eurchuk’s parents seeking change to B.C Infants Act

Tsawout hosts Saanich Peninsula community leaders at blanket ceremony

Reconciliation event meant to share the Indigenous exerience

Amazing Race Canada kicks off at Hatley Castle

Popular reality TV show will premiere later this year

WATCH:First responders score first, take inaugural Challenge Cup in Oak Bay

Ice hockey game raises funds for Cops for Cancer, encourages positive interaction with youth

LGBTQ advocates turn Victoria SOGI protest into dance party

Counter-protest outnumbers anti-SOGI activists on lawn of B.C. legislature

Judith Guichon steps down as Lieutenant Governor of B.C.

Election decision didn’t make her best moments from the past six years

Vancouver to rake in $30 million in empty homes tax in first year

The tax is the first of its kind in Canada, and was intended to address the city’s near-zero vacancy rate

B.C.’s snowpack continues to increase, melting delayed

River Forecast Centre official says sudden melting further into the season could cause flooding

Another B.C. First Nation voices support for Kinder Morgan pipeline

Simpcw First Nation claims people living on one-third of pipeline route support the project

Scooter crash leaves Island man with critical injuries

RCMP said a truck was making a left-hand turn when it collided with the scooter travelling through the intersection

Prankster broadcasts fake nuclear threat in Winnipeg

The audio recording on Sunday warned of a nuclear attack against Canada and the United States

ICBC reform aims to slow rising car insurance costs

‘Pain and suffering’ payouts to be capped, major injury limit to double

Most Read