RCMP say too early to know what happened in Broncos crash

RCMP Assistant Commissioner Curtis Zablocki said collission very complex

It could be weeks or even months before police know why a truck was in a rural Saskatchewan intersection when it crashed with a bus carrying the Humboldt Broncos hockey team.

“There are a lot of unanswered questions and our investigators are committed to providing those answers,” RCMP Assistant Commissioner Curtis Zablocki said Thursday. “Complex collision reconstruction investigations take time and are often measured in weeks and months, rather than days.”

He said what is certain is that a tractor-trailer was in the intersection when the collision happened on April 6.

“All of our efforts are dedicated to determining why the tractor-trailer unit was in the intersection,” Zablocki said. “We know the road conditions were clear and the sun was shining at the time of the collision.”

Zablocki said experts are looking into three areas: environmental factors such as road conditions and visibility, the mechanics of both vehicles and the role of the drivers.

Sixteen people — including 10 players — were killed and another 13 people were injured. The driver of the semi-trailer was not hurt. He was taken into custody immediately after the collision and released later that evening.

“The tractor-trailer unit driver remains in regular contact with our officers,” said Zablocki.

He added that it’s too early to comment on if there will be any charges in the case.

Police said that over 50 interviews have taken place with some of the survivors, the driver, the driver’s company and witnesses. More interviews are scheduled in the coming days and weeks.

Zablocki said the driver’s level of experience, the size of his load and where he was headed will be part of the investigation.

Sukhmander Singh, the owner of the Calgary-based trucking company, said the truck driver is doing better.

“He’s feeling good now and going to the doctor,” said Singh, who added the driver is still in counselling.

Singh said he’s basically out of business after Alberta Transportation ordered Adesh Deol Trucking Ltd. to keep its only other truck off the road. The move is standard when a company has been involved in a serious accident, the province has said.

“I’m just waiting for the investigation,” said Singh.

Police said they recovered driver log books along with engine control modules which have been taken to California for further analysis.

The intersection north of Saskatoon was closed Thursday because investigators were doing more tests and analysis.

Cpl. Doug Green, who works on the RCMP’s forensic collision reconstruction unit, said that a crash reconstruction wouldn’t happen on every case, but sometimes it can be helpful.

A dozen reconstruction specialists were at the crash site Thursday. The unit uses a variety of tools including GPS and drones.

The GPS system maps points that can be transferred to a specialized program for 2D and 3D viewing. The 3D data can be used to recreate the crash.

The drones allows investigators to get a different perspective of the scene.

Zablocki said it’s not unusual to revisit a collision scene.

“Our folks have gone back … to reposition similar or like vehicles in the area, in the intersection, and further examine potential site lines and other analytical aspects.”

Ryan McKenna, The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

LETTER TO THE EDITOR: Tier 3 Bantam Championships

“The packed arena and electricity within was fantastic.”

Port Hardy RCMP issues warning about recent overdose

“Our primary concern is public safety. We are urging the public to be aware of what is circulating.”

Port Hardy RCMP looking for volunteers who are interested in public safety

“The volunteer program will include community and crime prevention programs”

Suspicious fire in Alert Bay burns two homes, spreads to nearby bush

Police say underage suspects have been identified

VIDEO: North Island Bantam Eagles tie Dawson Creek Canucks in front of massive hometown crowd in Port Hardy

The Tier 3 Bantam Championships continued in style last night at the Don Cruickshank Memorial Arena.

Sparks fly as SUV speeds down wrong side of Highway 1 trying to flee RCMP

Captured on video, the vehicle headed westbound against oncoming traffic before crashing

Calgary captain has 3 points as Flames torch Canucks 3-1

Giordano leads way as Alberta side cracks 100-point plateau

Fire crews battle large blaze at Courtenay hostel

Courtenay Fire Chief Don Bardonnex said nobody was injured

1,300 cruise ship passengers rescued by helicopter amid storm off Norway’s coast

Rescue teams with helicopters and boats were sent to evacuate the cruise ship under extremely difficult circumstances

B.C. university to offer first graduate program on mindfulness in Canada

University of the Fraser Valley says the mostly-online program focuses on self-care and well being

Province announces $18.6 million for B.C. Search and Rescue

The funding, spread over three years, to pay for operations, equipment, and training

Late-season wave of the flu makes its round in B.C.

BC Centre for Disease Control reported 50 per cent jump in flu cases in first weeks of March

Tofino’s housing crisis causing some to seek shelter at the local hospital

Tofino’s housing crisis is pushing the town’s ‘hidden homeless’ population into the forefront.

Sentencing judge in Broncos crash calls for carnage on highways to end

Judge Inez Cardinal sentenced Jaskirat Singh Sidhu to eight years

Most Read