Couple's bodies recovered from B.C. slide
The bodies of a man and woman have been recovered from the cab of a pickup truck pulled from last week's massive mud and rock slide on Highway 16 near Terrace in northwestern B.C.
Following a search of the slide involving a metal detector, the truck washauledout of the debris on Tuesday night — eight days after the slide closed Highway 16 at Legate Creek east of Terrace.
The RCMP began that search after being told about an overdue couple who had been on their way home to Williams Lake from Terrace.
Initially, police had said they did not believe anyone had been caught in the wall of muck and debris, which wasup to 10 metres deep.
RCMP spokeswoman Const. Annie Linteau said it was unlikely searchers would have been able to save the pair if they had beenlocated earlier. She notedthe instability of the slide area made it difficult to do a thorough search last week.
"Search and rescue crews did do an immediate search of the landslide after it happened, but we as the RCMP and other agencies involved had been instructed to not disturb the area or not start to do any digging or anything like that, and it's 24 or 26 hours before highway crews were actually allowed to start clearing the highway."
The victims have been identified as Bob and Cheryl Flinton, who were travelling as part of their work as forestry and land use consultants.
The Flintons were highly regarded in Williams Lake for their work in land management. But friends and family say they were even better known for their habit of offering help to anyone who needed it.