Natural Resources

Avalanches

Date: December 31, 1917

Location: Seal Island, Humber River, believed to be Shellbird Island

Easting: 436400

Northing: 5421750

Latitude: 49° 46' 00" N

Longitude: 56° 51' 00" W

Fatalities: 1

Injuries: 0

Source: Western Star, Jan 2, 1918

On January 2nd 1918, the Western Star reported that "the closing hours of the old year witnessed one of the biggest down-falls of snow we have had in this part of the country for years. For over forty hours the snow fell thick and fast". Over four feet of snow fell, and the railway lines through the Gorge were blocked. Joshua Peddle, section foreman at Humbermouth, was travelling the line east to assist in keeping the line open when at Shellbird Island he was caught in an avalanche that swept him from the line. Rescue parties spent hours searching through the avalanche debris, but his body was never recovered - it was assumed he'd been carried into the Humber River. Mr Peddle was 53 years old.

 
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