CORRECTION: Sgt. Tim Paulmert with the RCMP’s Peace Region Traffic Services explained that the Grande Prairie man killed in Sunday’s crash on the South Taylor Hill was 29 years old, not 19 as previously reported.
FORT ST. JOHN, B.C. — A Grande Prairie man is officially the fourth person that has been killed on highways in the Peace Region since the start of 2018.
According to RCMP Sgt. Tim Paulmert with Peace Region Traffic Services, the crash happened Sunday afternoon at around 4:45. A 29 year-old man from Grande Prairie was the driver and lone occupant of a late-2000’s GMC pickup truck travelling northbound on Highway 97. The pickup truck crossed the centreline just north of the new rest area near the top of the South Taylor Hill and struck a southbound semi-truck head-on.
The driver of the semi-truck was uninjured, while 29 year-old driver of the pickup was pronounced dead at the scene. His name has not been released pending notification of next-of-kin.
Sgt. Paulmert explained that police have not ruled out speed, alcohol, or distracted driving in the crash, but he said that road conditions are not considered a factor. He explained that the highway was bare and dry in a trackset pattern, with compact snow in the area. Sgt. Paulmert added that the RCMP are continuing their investigation into the crash.
Sunday’s MVI is now the fourth fatal crash on highways in the B.C. Peace since the start of the year, which is twice as many fatal crashes than there have been in the City of Vancouver over the same timeframe. Vancouver’s second fatal crash of 2018 occurred early Sunday morning, when a 21 year-old man died in a single-vehicle crash while driving a Mercedes-Benz Car-2-Go.
So far this year, no one over 30 years old has been killed on roads in the B.C. Peace, and two of the four fatalities were passengers. On January 25th, a 22 year-old Chetwynd man was killed when the vehicle he was riding in crossed the centreline and was t-boned on the passenger side by an oncoming semi. Eight days later, Sgt. Paulmert said that a 22 year-old woman was killed in a crash near the former Silver Sands Resort south of Chetwynd, after the vehicle she was in lost control in poor road conditions and was t-boned by an oncoming pickup truck.
The most recent driver to perish at the wheel was a 17 year-old boy from Dawson Creek who died after his truck flipped when it hit the guardrail of the Taylor Bridge on January 5th. Sgt. Paulmert said that the teen was not wearing a seatbelt at the time of the crash and that according to the preliminary investigation, insufficient tire tread may have also played a factor.
Sgt. Paulmert concluded by reminding motorists to drive according to conditions, put aside any potential distractions, and to make sure their vehicles are mechanically sound.
With files from Global BC: https://globalnews.ca/news/4061420/car2go-high-speed-crash-ubc/