Several emergency vehicles responded to a fatal motor vehicle collision about 20 kilometres west of Salmon Arm. (Jim Elliot/Salmon Arm Observer)

Six deadly crashes on B.C. highways prompt police warning

Crashes in Chetwynd, Lytton, North Vancouver, the Shuswap, near Prince George and near Squamish

It was a deadly weekend on B.C. highways, as six people were killed in separate crashes.

The six fatal collisions spanned from Thursday to Monday, police said, and spared no part of B.C.

Chetwynd RCMP were called on Thursday after a man driving his F150 down Highway 29 went off the road, was ejected from his truck and died.

The next day, a woman died in Lytton after pulling out onto the highway right in front of another vehicle.

On Saturday, a man died after his vehicle veered into oncoming traffic in North Vancouver.

Sunday saw two killed in separate incidents after a Surrey woman crossed the centre line of the Sea-to-Sky highway north of Squamish, and a man driving a Ford pickup truck veered into the opposing lane on Highway 1 near Salmon Arm.

READ MORE: Family of Surrey woman killed in Sea-to-Sky crash wants to fulfil her dying wish

READ MORE: Man killed in Highway 1 crash west of Salmon Arm

The sixth crash took place just after midnight Monday when a pickup truck carrying three people crossed a centre line on Highway 97 south of Prince George, killing the driver.

“It’s a sad coincidence that we’ve had this cluster of crashes,” Cpl. Mike Halskov of the RCMP’s traffic division said.

The crashes were caused by simple mistake, he said, including the drivers who misjudged something and pulled out in front of another car.

Halskov couldn’t comment on what caused four of the drivers to veer into incoming traffic, but noted drugs and alcohol had not yet been ruled out for several of them.

He warned drivers to check the forecast at not only their starting point and destination, but along the way, too.

“As the weather changes as we get closer and closer to winter, we’re asking all drivers to be mindful of rapidly changing road conditions,” he said. “It might be sunny in the Lower Mainland, but snowing up north.”

Anyone heading out on a long drive should make sure their car is up for it.

Police recommend winter tires for inter-city drives, but tires rated for snow, with either a snowflake and mountain or “M+S” symbol, are legally required on most B.C. highways.

Halskov also warned drivers to make sure their brakes, coolant and wiper fluid were all in good order, as well as to defog their windows before heading out.

“If you’re not comfortable driving, stay home and find an alternate way to get to your destination,” he added.

The same applies for anyone imbibing with either alcohol or cannabis this holiday season.


@katslepian

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