Couple survives being buried in mudslide on B.C. highway

The couple, from Saskatchewan, were en route to Nelson when a tree fell in their path

Gabe Rosescu and his girlfriend Sheri Niemegeers were en route to Nelson, B.C., when a tree fell in their path. (Canadian Press)

A Saskatchewan couple is recovering in hospital after a mudslide swept them off a cliff in British Columbia.

Don Struthers says his brother-in-law Gabe Rosescu and his girlfriend Sheri Niemegeers were en route to Nelson, B.C., when a tree fell in their path.

“They were driving down the road, happy go lucky, excited to see their buddy. And Gabe said all of a sudden they saw one tree kind of fall right onto the road,” Struthers said.

“They didn’t have time to hit the brakes or anything and, before they knew it, they were engulfed by mud and trees. And that’s where their memory goes blank.”

READ MORE: Mudslide closes Hwy 3 near Creston

The first person to arrive was a firefighter from Lloydminster, Alta., who recognized the danger, Struthers said.

He and his passenger stopped traffic one kilometre back, before approaching the mudslide to see if anyone was hurt.

“All of a sudden they heard a voice crying out, it happened to be Gabe. They said they were pretty much chest-deep in mud and trees and branches,” Struthers said.

He said the couple was lucky that a pileup of trees stopped the vehicle from tumbling all the way down the cliff.

Rosescu was airlifted to a Kelowna, B.C., hospital, where he is recovering with head injuries, including some bleeding in the brain and a broken orbital bone.

Doctors are waiting until swelling goes down before scheduling a surgery, he said.

“I guess they are cautiously optimistic that things will keep improving,” Struthers said.

Niemegeers was taken to a hospital in Trail, B.C., and is being treated for a broken sternum and ankle.

Struthers said Rosescu is a sales rep and Niemegeers works for an oil-field company in northern Saskatchewan.

He said they have only been together four or five months, but are head over heels for one another.

The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

City shifts proposed transit station to King George after cancellation of LRT

Council to consider Newton Town Centre plan in fall

VIDEO: Plane makes forced landing on Highway 17 in Surrey

Police say no one was injured and no damage to aircraft or vehicles

The struggle for space inside Surrey’s elementary schools

SECOND IN A SERIES: A look at how overcrowding impacts student life

Nearly 200 motorcycles take off from Cloverdale for Brenden’s Ride

Annual fundraiser supports programs that empower people with disabilities

Surrey Schools estimates $350K for tampon, pad dispenser installation

District aims to have equipment set up by October or November

10 facts about Father’s Day

Did you know that the special day for dads was first celebrated in 1910?

Pride flag taken down by Township of Langley

Woman said she was told it was removed from her front yard because of a complaint

B.C. university to offer mentorship program for former youth in care

Students using the provincial tuition waiver program will soon be able to form a community at KPU

Cyclists competing in one of the toughest bike races on the planet pass through Fernie

Divide riders looking strong as they finish first leg of 4160 km race

You might not know these B.C. records are public

Hired a lawyer to file a civil claim? Those are published online

B.C. bus driver loses case to get job back after texting while driving full bus

An arbitator ruled that Tim Wesman’s phone usage was a “a reckless disregard for public safety”

Revamped B.C. Lions set to battle veteran Winnipeg Blue Bombers

The Lions’ first test of the season will be a big one

No business case for Trans Mountain expansion, says former environment minister

Cabinet is expected to announce its decision on the expansion of the Alberta-to-B.C. pipeline by Tuesday

LETTER: British Columbia’s forest industry crisis being made worse

Andrew Wilkinson warns of regulatory overload by John Horgan’s NDP

Most Read