Laura Randy took this photo of the backed up traffic on Highway 19 following an accident early Sunday afternoon. Photo courtesy of Laura Randy

Laura Randy took this photo of the backed up traffic on Highway 19 following an accident early Sunday afternoon. Photo courtesy of Laura Randy

Five occupants taken to hospital after truck drives off Highway 19 into creek

Highway 19 southbound lanes are closed and drivers are being rerouted between Buckley Bay Road and Hastings Road

Highway 19 southbound lanes are closed following a vehicle incident south of Buckley Bay Sunday afternoon.

According to Nick Rivers, president and search manager of Arrowsmith Search and Rescue, at around 1:30 p.m., a truck was headed south down Highway 19 when it left the road, drove down an embankment by the Cowie Creek bridge and into the creek.

There were five occupants in the vehicle, four of which had to be extricated. One occupant was taken to hospital by BC Air Ambulance and the other four were transported to hospital by ground. Rivers was unable to comment on the condition of the five occupants.

According to Rivers, the creek is about 75 to 100 feet below the highway and the creek water level is low at about 2 feet deep.

Southbound lanes on Highway 19 are closed between Buckley Bay Road and Hastings Road. A detour is in place on Highway 19A.

A request for comment has been sent to the Comox Valley RCMP.