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Merritt Fire Rescue Department extinguishing an early morning fire.

Chief David Tomkinson says crews were called to 1646 Lindley Creek Rd just before 5am.

"The fire turned out to be electrical in nature. It had something to do with an aquarium, but we are still investigating the exact cause."

The fire was contained to a single room.

The two occupants of the home were treated for smoke inhalation.

One woman has died after crashing her truck into the Thompson River.

Cpl Dan Moskaluk confirms an RCMP Dive team have recovered a woman's body, after a pick-up truck went into the river near Ashcroft on Saturday.

"It was deemed best to call in our underwater rescue recovery team, to have a look at the vehicle and then to try and retrieve the vehicle. On Saturday essentially we were at the scene and then on Sunday, the RCMP underwater recovery team did attend. They were able to make a dive out to the vehicle. It was confirmed unfortunately that there was one lone occupant that was deceased in the vehicle."

Moskaluk says Mounties are able to confirm the deceased is a woman in her mid-40's from the Ashcroft area.

A Kelowna man in jail for the gruesome death of a Merritt teenager has been recaptured after escaping from prison.

The Correctional Service of Canada says Robert Raymond Dezwaan was arrested by Agassiz RCMP at about 11:15 am Saturday, after being reported missing by staff in the minimum-security unit of the Mission Institution Friday afternoon.

The 53-year-old is serving a life sentence after pleading guilty to killing 16-year-old Cherish Oppenhiem in Merritt back in 2001.

The Correctional Service of Canada is reviewing the circumstances of Dezwaan's escape and are focused on assisting the RCMP with the ongoing investigation.

It was the third escape at the Mission Institution in the last four years.

For the second straight year, one lucky country music artist is getting a chance to win their way on to the stage at the Rockin' River Music Fest.

Organizer Kenny Hess pleased to announce that Road To Rockin' River 2017 officially kicks off today.

"Last year was a big success. We had several hundred people compete to win their way on to the main stage to open up for Sam Hunt."

For Hess, the idea for the competition is two-fold; to give local artists their shot, and grow homegrown talent for the festival.

"We're giving people their shot, and the same time building our base for future years. We couldn't be more excited about it."

This year's competition will take place at 10 venues around the province from now until June 17th.

The winners at each venue will then compete on Thursday, August 3rd at the Rockin' River Music Festival, for a chance to open for Brett Kissel and The Band Perry two nights later.

For information on how to sign up, go to www.roadtorockinriver.com.

Officials at the Highland Valley Copper mine are investigating after a leak caused the release of a large volume of contaminated water earlier this month.

Teck Resources Ltd. Senior Communications Specialist Chris Stannell said that freezing caused a leak in a pipeline servicing the mine's tailings facility and the release of about 850 cubic metres of process water on April 8th.

The spill was contained at the site, and the pipeline has been taken out of service pending repairs.

Stannell adds that the safety and stability of the mine's tailings dam was not affected in any way, and there were no environmental impacts because of the spill.

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