The cause of the accident has not yet been determined. Coach-all-terrain-has left the road which runs along the glacier, on Saturday afternoon, and overturned on a rocky slope below.
20 July 2020 14h11
The cause of the fatal accident on the glacier, on Saturday, is still not known
The Canadian Press
EDMONTON — The president of the company that provides the circuits to be “coaches” snow to a glacier between Banff and Jasper ensures that changes will be made, if necessary, after the accident that resulted in three deaths and more than two dozen injured on Saturday.
The cause of the accident has not yet been determined. Coach-all-terrain-has left the road which runs along the glacier, on Saturday afternoon, and overturned on a rocky slope below. Members of the royal Canadian mounted police (RCMP), the agency of the Health and Safety at work and the Office of the transportation safety board of Canada were inspected on-site, Sunday, the vehicle was dragged approximately 50 metres along an embankment steep and came to a stop close to the glacier.
“We started immediately, internally, to review what happened, what is our process with our protocol, at each step, but we also work with external teams to ensure a comprehensive review,” assured Dave McKenna, president of the business Pursuit, which offers sightseeing tours, with a fleet of 22 vehicles.
The all-terrain vehicle “Ice Explorer” regularly transports tourists on a road rocky, hilly towards the Athabasca glacier, in Jasper national park. In all, 27 people were on board the bus during the accident, Saturday. The health authority of the province of Alberta has indicated that, of the 24 survivors, 14 were suffering from injuries to the head or to the pelvis, which put their lives in danger. Five others were in serious condition, suffering from fractures, and five others suffered minor injuries.
Mr. McKenna stated that the seat belts are not required on these off-road vehicles, which reach a maximum speed of 40 km/h. The president of Pursuit indicates that once the investigation is completed, the company will implement all the changes that could be part of the recommendations, including the wearing of the seat belt.
These tours on the glacier are offered since 1969. “We have on average around 480 000 visitors per year and we use these vehicles since the early 1980s, has supported Mr. McKenna. We have welcomed over 16 million passengers on the ice for all these years, and no major incidents. Over a period of 39 years, of course, that there has been a few glitches, but nothing serious, with death or serious injury.”
Angela Bye was aboard one of these vehicles just before the accident Saturday. She maintains that she has never worried about his safety. “It’s like being on a school bus, with seats very high, much more padded. […] I felt quite safe.”
The “Columbia icefield”, a hundred kilometers south of Jasper, is one of the biggest fields of ice outside of the poles in the world.