UPDATE 3 p.m.:
A crash that closed a major route Friday morning has finally been cleared.
Drive BC reports that Highway 97 in Vernon is open.
Traffic was heavily backed up northbound.
“They directed me halfway to Kelowna and back, took me almost four hours,” one man told The Morning Star.
The road was closed for seven hours while investigations took place into a two-vehicle incident.
No details have been released by RCMP.
Check back for updates.
UPDATE 11 a.m.:
A two-vehicle crash still has Highway 97 closed at the south end of Vernon. And it could be hours before it opens.
“Drivers are asked to avoid the area and find alternative routes,” Vernon Fire Rescue Services said.
Emergency crews responded to the crash near the Vernon Cadet Training Centre at 8:28 a.m. Friday, Aug. 5.
The closure remains while the investigation continues.
Northbound traffic is being detoured onto College Way to Coldstream. Southbound traffic can take Commonage Road to Bailey Road.
Drive BC said the estimated time of re-opening is 4 p.m.
ORIGINAL 8:50 a.m.:
Highway 97 is closed near the Okanagan DND grounds in Vernon.
At approximately 8:28 a.m., on Aug. 5, the Vernon North Okanagan RCMP and emergency personnel responded to a serious multi-vehicle collision on the highway near the Vernon Cadet Training Centre.
Hwy. 97 is currently closed to traffic in both directions and the closure is expected to continue for several hours as the investigation continues. Detours are being set up and updates will be provided when available and posted to DriveBC.
Emergency crews are detouring traffic leaving Vernon.
The cause of the collision is unclear.
Expect traffic delays.