Update: Female driver of a vehicle in Wood Lake confirmed deceased

Highway 97 between Winfield and Oyama about to reopen after fatal accident preliminary investigation.

A fatal accident on Hwy 97 by Wood Lake resulted in traffic being turned around to take Oyama Road between Winfield and Oyama or via Carrs Landing. The highway will be closed for several hours while police investigate.

RCMP issued a press release stating: “Numerous witnesses and emergency personnel attempted to rescue the driver from the icy waters. The coroner has been called to the scene along with a traffic reconstructionist.

“For the safety of the emergency personnel, the highway will be closed for the duration of the investigation and traffic is being diverted along the back of Wood Lake from Oyama to Winfield (Oyama Road to Woodsdale Road).”

At 1:40 p.m. an undisclosed source said the victim is a female. Ten minutes earlier it was reported the occupant had been in the water for 20 minutes at that point.

Undisclosed reports had other people in the vehicle, however, it was later confirmed the female driver was the only occupant of the Jeep.

Others who attempted to rescue the woman before emergency response crews arrived  were treated at the scene for their exposure to the cold water.

A tow truck was called to Wood Lake, opposite Ponderosa Road, where the vehicle, reportedly a Jeep, went into the water at about 1:10 p.m., Dec. 19.

One person was reported in the vehicle when rescuers arrived and they were unable to detach her from her seat belt.

Traffic was turned around and directed to use Oyama Road on the east side of Wood Lake to travel between the Lake Country communities. Alternately use Oceola, Okanagan Centre and Carrs Landing roads to detour the scene while police and the coroner complete their investigation.

Police warned of slippery conditions and have requested extra sanding along the Carrs Landing route.

Undisclosed reports said the vehicle was 90 per cent submerged and about 15 ft from shore opposite Ponderosa Road.

Before rescuers arrived it is believed bystanders tried to winch the vehicle out and got it 3/4 out but the tethering device they were using broke and it rolled back into the water.

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