B.C. Ambulance Services prepare to send a patient to Royal Columbian Hospital via air ambulance following a fatal crash on the Coquihalla Highway. More than 40 people were transported to Hope Secondary, set up a s a warming station. One person has died and three are seriously injured. (Photo/Shane MacKichan)

B.C. Ambulance Services prepare to send a patient to Royal Columbian Hospital via air ambulance following a fatal crash on the Coquihalla Highway. More than 40 people were transported to Hope Secondary, set up a s a warming station. One person has died and three are seriously injured. (Photo/Shane MacKichan)

Icy roads, speed behind fatal 24-vehicle pileup involving charter bus, semi on Coquihalla

At least 50 people involved, five seriously injured on Wednesday, police say

It began as a rear-end dual-vehicle crash, and ended in a chain reaction that involved a total of at least 24 vehicles and 50 people in a pileup on the Coquihalla Highway on Wednesday morning near Hope. The horrific series of crashes seriously injured five people and killed a motorist and their dog.

RCMP spokesperson Cpl. Mike Halskov said the chain reaction began when a pickup truck collided into the rear of a stopped semi truck along the northbound lanes of Highway 5 in the S-curves. Road conditions were slippery and caught many drivers off-guard, resulting in a chain reaction collision involving passenger vehicles, semi trucks, tow trucks, an ambulance, an RCMP vehicle and a bus.

A South Okanagan man in his 40s and his dog, who were in the pickup truck in the initial collision, died at the scene of the crash. Five people were taken to hospital with significant injuries; only one remains in hospital with broken bones and is expected to recover. Dozens more sustained minor or non-life threatening injuries.

RELATED: Coquihalla reopened after pileup leaves 1 dead, dozens injured

Halskov said the police officer responding to the initial crash was among the injured.

“As he was approaching the scene, was forced to take evasive action and, due to the severe road conditions, he, too collided with the concrete barrier,” Halskov said. The officer’s vehicle was hit from behind by a jack-knifed semi truck that was not able to stop, injuring the officer.

“[The officer] watched through his rear view-mirror as he was about to be hit,” Halskov said.

Police confirmed treacherous road and weather conditions contributed to the crash, but speed with respect to the conditions was also a contributing factor.

“Police would like to remind motorists to drive according to the road and weather conditions,” Halskov said. “In this collision, slower speeds may not have prevented collisions due to the highway being glare ice, but slower speeds may have reduced injury.”

Police extended thanks to the volunteers and agencies that responded to Wednesday morning’s pileup. Investigators have received a significant amount of dash cam footage, but at this time, no criminal charges are anticipated.


@adamEditor18
adam.louis@hopestandard.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Coquihalla HighwayHopeRCMP

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

A protest has been planned for March 5, 2020 over Penticton council’s decision to reject an application from BC Housing to keep an emergency winter shelter open over a year longer than originally planned. (Jesse Day - Western News)
‘Bring your tent’: Protest planned in Penticton’s Gyro Park over winter shelter closure

Protesters plan to show council ‘what the result of their decision will look like’

Penticton mayor John Vassilaki responded to BC Housing minster David Eby’s remarks that the city has put themselves at risk of creating a tent city Wednesday, March 3, 2020. (Western News file photo)
Penticton mayor calls out BC Housing minister for ‘irresponsible fear-mongering’

Council recently rejected BC Housing’s request to keep a winter shelter open longer than first planned

Robert Emms spotted these beauties in a waterway in downtown Penticton. (Robert Emms)
Trumpeter swans visit downtown Penticton

The beautiful birds are regulars near the shores of Okanagan Lake on Highway 97

Ecologist and writer Don Gayton wraps up the Penticton Arts Council’s March events. (Submitted)
Penticton Arts Council unveils March’s programs

Making your own comics and short stories highlight March events

After 20 years in the community, Pathways Addiction Recovery Centre has had its funding cut by Interior Health, who says they are bringing addictions services in-house now. (Facebook)
Community outraged at Interior Health’s decision to cut funding to Penticton addiction services centre

People question why Pathways addiction services would be cut during an overdose epidemic

Health Minister Adrian Dix looks on as Dr. Bonnie Henry pauses for a moment as she gives her daily media briefing regarding COVID-19 for British Columbia in Victoria, B.C. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
7 additional deaths and 542 new COVID-19 cases in B.C.

Provincial health officials reported 18 new COVID-19 cases linked to variants of concern

John Hordyk said it isn’t fair to just look at COVID-19 deaths as many survivors are experiencing long-term impacts, himself included. (Photo by Rachel Muise)
Not getting better: Revelstoke man diagnosed with post-COVID-19 syndrome

‘I hope the damage isn’t long term, but it could be permanent’

The City of Vancouver estimates there are 3,500 Canada geese in the city right now, and that number is growing. (Bruce Hogarth)
Help tame Vancouver’s Canada goose population by reporting nests: park officials

The city is asking residents to be on the lookout so staff can remove nests or addle eggs

Chief Justice Christopher Hinkson (Office of the Chief Justice)
Judge questions whether B.C.’s top doctor appreciated right to religious freedom

Lawyer for province says Dr. Henry has outlined the reasons for her orders publicly

A sample of guns seized at the Pacific Highway border crossing from the U.S. into B.C. in 2014. Guns smuggled from the U.S. are used in criminal activity, often associated with drug gangs. (Canada Border Service Agency)
B.C. moves to seize vehicles transporting illegal firearms

Bill bans sale of imitation or BB guns to young people

A recently published study out of UBC has found a link between life satisfaction levels and overall health. (Pixabay)
Satisfied with life? It’s likely you’re healthier for it: UBC study

UBC psychologists have found those more satisfied with their life have a 26% reduced risk of dying

A vial of some of the first 500,000 of the two million AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine doses that Canada has secured through a deal with the Serum Institute of India in partnership with Verity Pharma at a facility in Milton, Ont., on Wednesday, March 3, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Carlos Osorio - POOL
Federal panel recommends 4-month gap between COVID vaccine doses due to limited supply

The recommendation applies to all COVID-19 vaccines currently approved in Canada

A vial of Oxford-AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine is pictured at a family doctor office, Thursday, Feb. 25, 2021 in Paris. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP -Christophe Ena
Trudeau ‘optimistic’ that timeline for rollout of COVID vaccines can be accelerated

Canada set to receive more than 6M COVID-19 vaccine dose than initially expected, by end of March

The restart of the program means seniors can receive affordable meals delivered five days a week Photo by Scott Suchman for The Washington Post.
Princeton Meals on Wheels one year trial will cost $92k

Program restarts, and volunteer drivers are needed

Most Read