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Search and rescue teams have called off the search for four Johnsons Landing residents for the evening.
Crews have been working at the small community north of Kaslo for most of the day after a massive landslide this morning.
“Darkness has compromised the safety of emergency responders, so personnel have secured the scene until the morning,” read a press release from the Regional District of Central Kootenay sent late tonight. “Emergency personnel will meet early tomorrow to assess and plan prior to resuming the search.”
The regional district reported this afternoon that four residents of the community were unaccounted for following the slide.
“The first priority is obviously to account for those people and find out if they may be trapped under the rubble,” said RDCK spokesperson Bill Macpherson.
The slide which was initiated from Gar Creek shortly after 11 a.m. severely impacted three homes in the small community on the east side North Arm of Kootenay Lake.
According to Regional District of Central Kootenay Emergency Operations Centre spokesperson Bill Macpherson, four residents were unaccounted for as of Thursday evening.
A local state of emergency has been declared for Johnsons Landing, which is an hour drive from Kaslo, on the east shore of Kootenay Lake, and is home to about 35 people.
Nelson Search and Rescue and RCMP helicoptered to the scene. The only road into the community is blocked and power is cut off to homes.
“The RCMP has immediately engaged a large number of resources to address the first priority of conducting a rescue of the affected residents. RCMP officers from the Kootenay Boundary Regional Detachment and Kaslo Detachment are on scene with support provided by RCMP Traffic Services, Southeast District Air Services Helicopter from Kelowna, two police service dog teams, underwater recovery dive team,” Cpl. Dan Moskaluk
The Nelson and Kaslo Search and Rescue teams are both on location with vessels and two helicopters.
According to the RCMP as of 3:15 p.m., information indicated that the landslide had destroyed three homes.
The cause of the slide is still unknown.
For photos of the destruction head to the Emergency Info BC website.
If you have information or photos of the landslide, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.