Man arrested after pickup truck crashes into Montreal business: police

A man was arrested for possible drunk driving after his vehicle crashed into a store in Montreal.

An emergency call was placed at about 2:30 a.m., indicating that a pickup truck smashed into a business front door in the Rivière-des-Prairies  area of Montreal.

Montreal police arrived at the scene and found the 33-year-old man without any visible injuries.

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Montreal police spokeswoman Caroline Chèvrefils says the man appeared to be intoxicated and was transported to a detention centre for a breathalyzer test.

Chèvrefils says that the store damages were mostly found inside, without specifying the name of the business.

The investigation is ongoing and charges are yet to be laid.

© 2021 The Canadian Press

Search crews looking for missing Edmonton man in Wabamun Lake

Search crews are combing Wabamun Lake, west of Edmonton, after a swimmer disappeared Friday evening.

RCMP told Global News a 20-year-old man was swimming near a boat around 9 p.m. near Kapasiwin when he ended up in distress and didn’t surface.

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The fire department arrived to help with a boat, but there was no sign of the man.

They were back at the scene Saturday, along with dive search crews and the RCMP’s sonar equipment.

RCMP recently said hot weather has resulted in Albertans flocking to lakes and rivers to enjoy recreational water activities such as tubing, paddle boarding and swimming — which has unfortunately resulted in injuries and fatalities.

© 2021 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

Nk’Mip Creek wildfire: 126 more properties ordered to evacuate

More than 100 properties were told to evacuate on Saturday because of the Nk’Mip Creek wildfire that’s burning near Osoyoos.

Estimated at 6,800 hectares and deemed to be out of control by the BC Wildfire Service, the Regional District of Kootenay Boundary (RDKB) ordered an additional 126 properties to evacuate in and around the Baldy Mountain neighbourhood.

According to the regional district, the total number of properties now under evacuation order is 248, and 318 properties remain on evacuation alert until further notice.

Read more:
Nk’Mip Creek wildfire: Osoyoos Indian Band rescinds evacuation order for handful of addresses

Previously, the area now under evacuation order had been under an evacuation alert that had been issued on Tuesday.

“The BC Wildfire Service confirmed with the RDKB overnight that residents would need to leave the area this morning,” the regional district said in a press release.

The RDKB says the evacuation order area includes Mt. Baldy Ski Resort extending east to include the west side of Fish Lake West Road, Belchrome Forest Service Road and Conkle Lake Provincial Park.

All evacuation orders and alerts, along with a complete list of addresses and maps of the applicable areas, are available at the regional district’s website.

The regional district says anyone ordered to evacuate should gather only essential belongings and exit along Highway 3 toward the Village of Midway, where an evacuation centre is set up at the Boundary Expo Recreation Centre (the arena) at 734 Seventh Avenue.

The Regional District of Okanagan Similkameen has also issued evacuation orders for properties in the Anarchist Mountain area south of Highway 3. Those orders are available on the regional district’s website.

Earlier Saturday, the Osoyoos Indian Band downgraded an evacuation order to an evacuation alert for a handful of addresses, while the RDOS expanded a previous evacuation order to include two addresses.

© 2021 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

U.S. states draw outside support as wildfires blast through West

WATCH: The psychological effects of wildfire evacuations

Out-of-state crews headed to Montana Saturday to battle a blaze that injured five firefighters as the West struggled with a series of fires that have ravaged rural lands and destroyed homes.

Progress was being made on the nation’s largest blaze, the Bootleg Fire in Oregon, but additional mandatory evacuations were ordered Friday evening and less than half of it had been contained, fire officials said. The growth of the sprawling fire had slowed, but increased fire activity was expected Saturday, and thousands of homes remained threatened on its eastern side, authorities said.

In California, Gov. Gavin Newsom on Friday proclaimed a state of emergency for four northern counties because of wildfires that he said were causing “conditions of extreme peril to the safety of persons and property.” The proclamation opens the way for more state support.

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On Saturday, fire crews from California and Utah were coming to Montana, Gov. Greg Gianforte announced. Five firefighters were injured Thursday when swirling winds blew flames back on them as they worked on the Devil’s Creek fire burning in rough, steep terrain near the rural town of Jordan.

They remained hospitalized Friday. Bureau of Land Management spokesperson Mark Jacobsen declined to release the extent of their injuries. The firefighters included three U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service crew members from North Dakota and two U.S. Forest Service firefighters from New Mexico.

In California, the Tamarack Fire south of Lake Tahoe continued to burn through timber and chaparral and threatened communities on both sides of the California-Nevada state line. The fire, sparked by lightning July 4 in Alpine County, has destroyed at least 10 buildings.

In Butte County, California, the Dixie Fire continued to burn in rugged and remote terrain, hampering firefighters’ efforts to contain the blaze as it grows eastward, becoming the state’s largest wildfire so far this year.

Heavy smoke from both huge fires lowered visibility and may at times ground aircraft providing support for fire crews on the ground. The air quality south of Lake Tahoe and across the state line into Nevada deteriorated to very unhealthy levels.

In north-central Washington, firefighters battled two blazes in Okanogan County that threatened hundreds of homes and again caused hazardous air quality conditions Saturday. And in northern Idaho, east of Spokane, Washington, a small fire near the Silverwood Theme Park prompted evacuations Friday evening at the park and in the surrounding area. The theme park was back open on Saturday with the fire half contained.

Although hot weather with afternoon winds posed a continued threat of spreading blazes, weekend forecasts also called for a chance of scattered thunderstorms in California, Utah, Nevada, Arizona and other states. However, forecasters said some could be dry thunderstorms that produce little rain but a lot of lightning, which can spark new blazes.

More than 85 large wildfires were burning around the country, most of them in Western states, and they had burned over 553,000 hectares of land.

© 2021 The Canadian Press

Disability Rights Coalition wants to see Nova Scotia be more inclusive

In 2013, the incumbent government committed to a ten-year plan for equality, making Nova Scotia fully accessible and promising they would close institutions providing community-based living supports for all persons living with disabilities by 2023.

With 30 months to go, the progress thus far has been glacial. The Disability Rights Coalition is doubtful about seeing the promise of government into fruition.

The DRC conducted a months-long accountability review of the government’s progress on the roadmap for inclusive communities for people with disabilities.

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“I wouldn’t say we were surprised but we were shocked and disappointed by the degree to which the government has failed to move forward on its commitments,” said Claire McNeil who serves as legal counsel for the DRC.

In 2013, a roadmap was designed by a task force consisting of people working in the government and community members which set out a careful step-by-step plan on how to deal with the crisis at the time in terms of excluding people with disabilities and segregating them.

Vicky Levack, who lives with cerebral palsy and is a disability-rights advocate with DRC has been living in a retirement home since she was 21 years old. She says even though she doesn’t live in an institution, it’s not right that her freedom has been violated as her options were limited.

“This care model is designed for people who are at the end of their lives. Not for people in the beginning or trying to live their life so we just need to give people better options so they don’t feel forced to choose like I was.”

Levack wants to see Liberal Party leader Iain Rankin keep the Liberals promise if he is elected premier.

“They had seven years to do something before the pandemic hit and they were dragging their feet, so, I don’t cut them a lot of slack. If they were doing something and had to stop and say, ‘OK, it’s going to be 2025 because the pandemic hit,’ I’d understand that,” said Levack.

Levack feels as though the disability community has been forgotten about.

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NDP Leader, Gary Burrill says this is a major issue for his party. Out of the NDP’s provincial slate of candidates, there are five people with disabilities.

“This is something that is very important and that we value a great deal because those people — we’re so hopeful that we will be able to elect them — will then be able to bring to the caucus table, out of their lived experience the priorities that are needed,” said Burrill.

If elected in the election on Aug. 17, Burrill says the commitment of the NDP is to complete what the Liberals set out to do a decade ago.

“We will move forward getting people out in supportive housing or appropriate group homes,” he said.

PC Leader Tim Houston said although he didn’t see the report, he believes the current government hasn’t done enough for people living with disabilities.

“I think it goes back to a lack of vision and a lack of respect for people,” said Houston.

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Currently, the government, through its Disability Supports program, is assisting fewer people with disabilities than it was in 2013 when it committed to the roadmap.

Levack says she wants whoever is elected to commit to the roadmap so she and others in her community can feel like “full-fledged,” citizens.

She says she has reached out to N.S. Liberal Leader Iain Rankin several times about the issue and his response has been that it is a complicated matter.

“We need to continue to build more small option homes. There is a waitlist that we need to make more traction on. We keep working with community organizations. It’s a hard timeline to meet,” said Rankin at a press briefing on Wednesday in Antigonish.

© 2021 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

Kingston asks residents for input in 2022 budget survey

The city of Kingston is beginning development of their 2022 city budget and is encouraging Kingstonian participation in a survey to help shape funding decisions.

As the city of Kingston begins the development of its 2022 city budget, Kingstonians are being encouraged to participate in a survey to help shape funding decisions for the upcoming year.

“This is their tax dollars that we’re spending, and so it’s important that we’re spending it on the right things,” says the city’s chief financial officer and treasurer, Desiree Kennedy.

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Kingston’s Financial Services team took to Springer Market Square on Saturday, looking for feedback and input from residents on the upcoming 2022 city budget.

“We really need to hear from people in terms of what their thoughts are so, at the end of the day, we’re spending on things that are important to people,” says Kennedy.

So far, she says many Kingstonians are hoping the city will spend on affordable housing, keeping taxes low, road maintenance and pandemic recovery for small businesses.

“We will be pulling all of that information together and we’ll be doing a report to council in September that will summarize all of the feedback and the information,” Kennedy says.

The survey data will also be given to respective departments to help inform their budget development.

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Last year’s engagement survey saw just under 400 Kingstonians share their opinions with the city. The Financial Services team is hoping to get over the 500 survey mark this year.

“If you don’t voice your opinion, never hear it,” says Kingstonian Warren Thwing. “Whether they take it or not, that’s a different story. If they don’t, every four years we can throw ya out.”

Janet Town has been working for almost 50 years and says it’s really important to let local government know what’s not working and why low-income people are struggling.

“We have a voice. If we don’t tell you what we need, what’s not working, what is working, how can you do the best for us? And if you’re not doing the best for us, why should we vote for you?” Town says.

The Financial team will be back at Springer Market Square on August 5 to answer questions and gather suggestions, or they have an online survey available virtually.

© 2021 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

5 stabbed, hospital locked down after Alberta biker gangs brawl in Cranbrook, B.C.: police

The East Kootenay community of Cranbrook, B.C., found itself host to a scene better suited to TV’s Sons of Anarchy on Friday, as violence exploded between a pair of rival biker gangs.

Five people were hospitalized with stab wounds after what RCMP described as a brawl between rival gangs from Alberta in Cranbrook on Friday night.

Mounties were called to a gas station on Cranbrook Street North around 7 p.m. to reports of “multiple people fighting,” and were able to separate two groups “determined to be rival outlaw motorcycle gangs.”

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BC Emergency Health Services says paramedics weren’t called to the scene.

But officers were later called to Cranbrook’s hospital, where police say five people turned up on their own with non-life-threatening stab wounds.

Interior Health confirmed the hospital was locked down on advice from police.

The RCMP said officers were stationed in the parking lot to prevent further violence between the gangs, “who had attended the hospital, but were refused entry.”

The stabbing victims were released after treatment, and officers escorted one group out of town, police said.

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No arrests were made.

The Cranbrook RCMP and the Combined Forces Special Enforcement Unit — B.C.’s provincial gang squad — continue to investigate.

Police said there was no indication the brawl was linked to the ongoing Lower Mainland gang conflict.

© 2021 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

Death toll rises to at least 125 as heavy rain in India triggers floods, landslides

Rescue teams in India struggled through thick sludge and debris on Saturday to reach dozens of submerged homes as the death toll from landslides and accidents caused by torrential monsoon rain rose to 125.

Maharashtra state is being hit by the heaviest rain in July in four decades, experts say. Downpours lasting several days have severely affected the lives of hundreds of thousands, while major rivers are in danger of bursting their banks.

In Taliye, about 180 km southeast of the financial capital of Mumbai, the death toll rose to 42 with the recovery of four more bodies after landslides flattened most homes in the village, a senior Maharashtra government official said.

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“About 40 people are still trapped. The possibility of rescuing them alive is thin as they’ve been trapped in mud for more than 36 hours,” said the official, who declined to be identified as he is not authorized to talk to the media.

Harsh weather has hit several parts of the world in recent weeks, with floods in China and Western Europe and heat waves in North America, raising new fears about the impact of climate change.

Parts of India’s west coast have received up to 594 mm of rain, forcing authorities to move people out of vulnerable areas as they released water from dams about to overflow. The hill station of Mahabaleshwar recorded its highest ever rainfall — 60 cm in 24 hours.

Rescuers were searching for victims of landslides in four other places in the state, the official said.

“Around 90,000 people were rescued from flood affected areas,” the Maharashtra government said in a statement, as authorities released water from overflowing dams.

Thousands of trucks were stuck for more than 24 hours on a highway linking Mumbai with the southern technology hub of Bengaluru, with the road submerged in some places.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi said he was in anguish over the loss of lives.

“The situation in Maharashtra due to heavy rains is being closely monitored and assistance is being provided to the affected,” Modi said on Twitter on Friday.

Read more:
At least 30 dead in India’s Mumbai city after heavy rains trigger landslides

In the southern state of Telangana, heavy rain caused flooding in the state capital of Hyderabad and other low-lying areas.

Indian environmentalists have warned that climate change and indiscriminate construction in fragile coastal regions could lead to more disasters.

“The rain fury that lashed Mahabaleshwar … is a strong warning against any more tampering with the ecologically fragile Western Ghats,” environment economist Devendra Sharma said on Twitter referring to the range of hills along India’s west coast.

© 2021 Reuters

Regina police investigating death of man found in alley Saturday

The Regina police service and Saskatchewan Coroners Service is investigating the death of a man found lying in an alley overnight.

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Police say they were dispatched to the east alley of the 800-block of Queen Street for reports of an injured man at 1:30 a.m.

EMS was also dispatched and the man was pronounced dead at the scene.

No further details have been provided at this early stage of the investigation and the scene is still being held by police.

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Anyone with information about this investigation is asked to contact police at 306-777-6500 or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477.

© 2021 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

B.C. wildfire update Saturday: Part of Lytton evacuation order lifted, Mexican firefighters arrive

WATCH LIVE: B.C. Public Safety Minister Mike Farnworth to hold a media availability as Mexican firefighters arrive in B.C.

Residents of a small portion of a B.C. village devastated by fire were given the green light to return on Saturday, as the province also prepared to receive 100 Mexican firefighters to help tackle wildfires around B.C.

Global News will live stream a news conference with B.C. Public Safety Minister on the arrival at 1:10 p.m. PT.

They will join the estimated 3,320 firefighters and other crew, including 94 out-of-province personnel, already battling the wildfires.

The Canadian Forces confirmed that 160 of a planned 350 troops had arrived in Vernon on Friday to begin assisting with firefighting efforts.

Read more:
Lytton Creek wildfire spreads to 24,365 hectares as more people ordered to leave

The province saw minimal fire growth overnight, and the number of active fires across B.C. fell to 261 from 275 on Friday, and around 300 earlier in the week.

About 5,000 people remained on evacuation orders.

On Saturday, emergency officials announced that for the Village of Lytton, they would downgrade an evacuation order for a small section on the southeastern edge to an evacuation alert.

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The downgrade applies only to properties in Ponderosa Heights and on Loring way, along with the Lytton Fire Base. The remainder of the village, which was decimated by fire, remains off-limits.

Additional evacuation orders issued by the Thompson-Nicola Regional District were unaffected, and the Lytton Creek Wildfire remained active at more than 24,000 hectares.

Read more:
Nk’Mip Creek wildfire: Osoyoos Indian Band rescinds evacuation order for handful of addresses

On Saturday, the Osoyoos Indian Band also downgraded part of an evacuation order to an evacuation alert for several properties related to the Nk’Mip Creek wildfire.

However the Regional District of Kootenay Boundary expanded an evacuation order for Electoral Area E to include 126 new properties in and around the Baldy Mountain neighbourhood.

That fire tripled in size on Friday to 6,800 hectares and has destroyed at least one home.

The Brenda Creek Wildfire, just south of the Okanagan Connector and about 40 kilometres from West Kelowna, remained active and mapped at about 662 hectares.

Crews have deployed sprinklers to protect a key electrical transmission line serving about 60,000 people in the area, and 43 homes in Electoral Area H have been ordered evacuated.

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B.C. wildfire update Friday: Sirens sound as warning as fires threaten communities

Helicopter crews were scheduled to bucket the fire on Saturday, and winds were forecast to be calmer.

Residents of the community of Seymour Arm, east and south of Seymour Arm Bay Road, also remained under an evacuation order due to the Hunakwa Lake Fire, which was burning about nine kilometres south of the community.

It was last mapped at about 1,100 hectares, but officials said it had likely grown and there was no accurate, updated mapping.

Two wildfires in the Lower Arrow Lake area of the Central Kootenay region also continue to threaten homes.

The Michaud Creek fire, about 20 kilometres south of Edgewood, was last mapped at about 4,600 hectares.

It’s forced the evacuation of 356 properties in the communities of Edgewood and Needles north to Whatshan Lake.

In the community of Fauquier, 156 properties remain under an evacuation order for the Octopus Creek fire, but officials say the blaze’s growth towards the town has slowed amid reduced winds.

© 2021 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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