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Highway 3 crash: Fernie, B.C., woman dies swerving to avoid elk in Alberta

A 35-year-old Fernie, B.C., woman has died after swerving to miss an elk on a southern Alberta highway.

Vehicle swerved to avoid hitting an elk, lost control and hit truck parked on side of road

A 35-year-old Fernie, B.C., woman has died after swerving to miss an elk on a southern Alberta highway.

RCMP say a pickup truck struck an elk as it crossed Highway 3 near Crowsnest Pass, Alta., on Wednesday night.

The vehicle was damaged but the driver was able to safely park on the side of the highway and activate their emergency lights. The driver was not injured.

Shortly after a woman in a second eastbound vehicle swerved to avoid another elk but lost control. 

The vehicle, which had two occupants, turned sideways and skidded into the parked truck.

The woman was pronounced dead at the scene. EMS also transported the 35-year-old male passenger from Fernie to hospital in the Crownest Pass. 

RCMP says road conditions, which were partially snow and frost-covered, are believed to have contributed to the accident but an investigation is still underway.

Paul Schepella, a volunteer firefighter in the Crowsnest Pass, says it's the time of year when elk herds move back down to the valley bottom where the open water is — especially at night. 

He suggests drivers be extra cautious in the area.

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