A 27-year-old man is dead and others injured, including two young children, in another crash on a a concerning stretch of Highway 5, north of Barriere.
The crash, involving two vehicles, happened on May 20 at 8:30 p.m. along a portion of the highway known as ‘Pigs Corner,’ located just south of Darfield.
According to investigators, the man was heading southbound in a 2018 Mercedes C300 when the vehicle collided with a northbound 2013 Ford Escape. Inside that vehicle was a Barriere senior with two grandchildren in the car, police confirmed.
“It has been determined that speed was definitely a factor,” said RCMP Sgt. Grant Simpson, detachment commander of the Clearwater RCMP.
The man who died in the Mercedes was from Cawston, B.C. His passenger was also injured in the collision.
He took the full impact on his side of the vehicle and was what some described as ‘airborne,’ narrowly missing going into the high water of the North Thompson fast flowing river.
Those injured were transported to Royal Inland Hospital by ambulance and sustained multiple injuries including a broken pelvis, with one of the children also suffering from a concussion and other serious injuries, according to police.
Barriere Mayor Ward Stamer indicated that the southbound car was going too fast and was launched into oncoming traffic.
“The driver likely wasn’t familiar with the highway in that section.”
Stamer told Black Press Media that he has spoken with Mayor Blackwell of Clearwater and contacted Simpcw First Nation Chief Lampreau to discuss the possibility of installing high visibility signage in both directions in that area in addition to the variable slow speed signage already in place there.
Stamer also raised concern that there was no air ambulance available at the time of the incident due to staffing issues.
Highway 5 has seen a dramatic increase in fatalities and injuries in recent years, something the mayor has been raising awareness about.