Vehicle crashes into Scotiabank in Pemberton 

Pemberton's town centre was rocked Monday as a truck crashed into a Scotiabank branch.

The incident occurred at approximately 12:30 p.m. A 68-year-old male driver was in the branch parking lot. He drove over a curb and ran into the side of the building, creating a hole in an exterior wall. He had two passengers; no one in the car or the bank was hurt.

Sgt. Blake MacLeod with the Pemberton RCMP said the crash happened right where there was a window in the building and created an approximately four-by-eight-inch hole.

"I don't believe it was excessive speed or anything like that," he said. "It just appears to be driver error, and the truck did go through quite easily."

Neither alcohol nor drugs are believed to be factors in the accident.

Last week, however, RCMP in the area attended to a motor vehicle incident where alcohol was certainly involved.

On Feb. 4 at about 4:15 p.m. an officer with the Stl'Atl'Imx Tribal Police Service saw a sport utility vehicle go off Portage Road and into Gates River in the Birken area, some distance north of Mount Currie and Pemberton. The vehicle, according to Sgt. MacLeod, was trying to negotiate a curve in the road before it went over an embankment and into the river.

"There's quite a large shoulder," MacLeod said. "I've been out there myself, I don't believe there's any no-posts or guard rail or anything like that.

"I'm not saying this is a factor. If the speed limit is respected, they're easily able to follow the path of the road. I don't believe the roadway or the surface were factors in this accident."

The driver, a female, was carrying a five-year-old passenger. Alcohol is believed to be involved in the incident, as the driver blew over the legal limit during a breathalyzer test, though MacLeod wouldn't say how much.

"I wouldn't release that right now just because the investigation is pending and hasn't gone forward to our Crown counsel," he said. "But it was over the legal limit, I can say that much."

The legal limit for driving with alcohol in one's system is 80 milligrams of alcohol per 100 mL of blood.

Speed wasn't a factor in the crash, according to MacLeod. The driver is expected to make her first appearance in court on April 23 in Pemberton Provincial Court. Her name is not being released pending an investigation and submission of charges.

In a separate incident, a 67-year-old Vancouver male died while skiing with friends near Keith's Hut at Cerise Creek, a backcountry area, on Jan. 30.

The male, identified as John Richard Picherack, collapsed while skiing. People on scene tried CPR but could not revive him. RCMP received word of the collapse at around 4:30 p.m. Recovery efforts were postponed to the next morning due to weather conditions and the time of day, according to an RCMP news release.

A coroner examined the body once it arrived in Pemberton and said Picherack died of natural causes.

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