North

Yukon travellers crash vehicle, then burn it to survive the cold overnight

RCMP say three people in Yukon went off the road earlier this week, then set their vehicle on fire to stay warm while waiting for help.

'They deliberately set their vehicle on fire to stay warm,' police said

The crash happened between Carmacks and Pelly Crossing, Yukon. Three people lit their vehicle on fire to keep warm Sunday night. (Alexandra Byers/CBC)

Three people had a harrowing experience in Yukon this week, after crashing their vehicle and then waiting hours for help in –50 C weather.

According to RCMP, the people were driving Sunday night between Carmacks and Pelly Crossing when their vehicle went off the road. There was no cell service, and they had no way to call for help.

"After several hours, they deliberately set their vehicle on fire to stay warm," police said, in an emailed response to CBC Wednesday.

RCMP said they got a call about a crash on Monday morning. The trio were picked up by passersby at about 7:30 a.m. on Monday, said police.

RCMP said two of the people are being treated for injuries due to exposure to the cold.

Yukon is in the middle of a prolonged cold snap, and police are reminding people to take precautions when travelling:

  • Make a plan and tell someone about it, and when to expect you back.
  • Bring an emergency survival kit which might include a satellite phone, extra clothing, food and water, and a way to make a fire.
  • Dress in layers and stay dry.
  • If you get into trouble, stay put until help arrives.

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