Two individuals lost their lives in a grizzly bear attack within Alberta’s Banff National Park, as announced by Parks Canada on Saturday evening. The people who passed were common-law partners, and the couple’s dog, who was with them at the time, was also killed.
Natalie Fay, the external relations manager for Parks Canada’s Banff field unit, reported that the agency received a distress signal from a GPS device in the Red Deer River Valley around 8 p.m. on Friday, indicating a bear attack.
Fay explained in a statement that a specialized team trained to handle wildlife attacks was promptly dispatched. However, adverse weather conditions impeded their response time.
She stated, “Due to the weather conditions prevailing at the time, helicopter deployment was not possible, so the response team had to journey to the location on the ground overnight.”
“The response team arrived at the scene at 1 a.m. and unfortunately discovered two deceased individuals.”
While at the site, the response team encountered an aggressive grizzly bear, which prompted Parks Canada staff to euthanize it on-site for public safety, as relayed by Fay.
The Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) arrived at 5 a.m. to transport the victims to Sundre, Alberta, Fay added.
In a statement, Parks Canada expressed heartfelt condolences to the families and friends of the victims, acknowledging the tragic nature of the incident.
As a safety precaution, an area closure has been implemented around the attack site, encompassing the Red Deer and Panther valleys from Snow Creek Summit east to the National Park boundary, and north to Shale Pass. This closure will remain in effect until further notice.
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