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Longboarder seriously injured in Sylvan Lake

A 22-year-old longboarder from Red Deer is fighting for his life after losing control of his board on a residential street in Sylvan Lake on Sunday.

Sylvan Lake RCMP Cpl. James Allemekinders said three men were longboarding down a hill on Old Boomer Road around 2:20 p.m. when two of the men wiped out on asphalt road after hitting some loose gravel.

Witnesses said the men were travelling at a “high rate of speed.”

One man suffered a severe head injury and was transported to the Foothills Medical Centre in Calgary by STARS Air Ambulance.

The man was in stable condition in the intensive care unit at last report.

Another 22-year-old man was treated for minor injuries at the Red Deer Regional Hospital Centre and released.

The third man maintained control of his board and provided first aid while waiting for help to arrive.

Allemekinders said the three men were not wearing helmets or other safety gear.

“Common sense needs to apply when you’re doing that kind of activity, you have to wear helmets,” said Allemekinders. “You have to wear things like gloves and other safety equipment.”

Allemekinders said stunting under the Traffic Safety Act can net a lawbreaker a $402 fine.

Stunting is defined as performing or engaging in any stunt or other activity on a highway that is likely to distract, startle or interfere with other users of the highway.

“It just doesn’t apply to drivers,” he said. “It can apply to somebody standing on the side of the road distracting drivers or in this case, this could apply to skateboarders or longboarder,” he said. “Generally I can’t speak in this incident you see skateboarders utilizing roads that have hills as a track to gain speed to go fast. ... A lot of times you see them weaving in and out of traffic. That’s not acceptable. Traffic laws apply. That’s our concern. Safety equipment and being in a safe place.”

No charges have been laid but the incident is under investigation. No names are being released.

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