No evidence of reported bear attack

Bears have been seen in the area in the past, but in this instance there is no evidence of attack or negative interaction. Photo SPIN

No evidence has been found to support a 911 call made about a possible bear attack on the night of June 24.

Around 8:40 p.m. Sun Peaks Fire Rescue (SPFR) was notified of a possible attack in the area at the bottom of the ski run Agitator, on Mount Morrisey.

“The original call was from somebody who thought they had seen a bear attack on a ski run,” said SPFR captain Martin McQuade.

McQuade said with little information their members set out to search from The Burfield to P5 and all areas on the mountain in between. SPFR members were assisted in their search by Sun Peaks Resort LLP staff, RCMP and an ambulance also attended.

“We did search anything in the area,” he said. “Nothing was found and it was called off due to a lack of information or finding a patient.”

This morning, June 25, conservation officers arrived in Sun Peaks and searched the area of the reported sighting. McQuade confirmed the officers found no evidence of an attack and saw one bear, who showed no aggressive or abnormal behaviour.

“They saw absolutely nothing that indicates concern on their end,” he said. “Standard bear activity…they’re standing down.”

McQuade said it is clear somebody saw something that looked like it could’ve been an attack but no victim was found and nobody has come forward to report a negative interaction with a bear in the area. If anyone has, he said, he encouraged them to contact SPFR and reminded residents to carry a cellphone with them while walking or hiking to call 911 if assistance is needed.

“If you’re out on a walk be bear aware and if you’re having an emergency call 911,” he said.

Safe habits while recreating in areas with bears include making noise, carrying a bear bell, spray or banger and keeping pets on a leash.