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Pickup truck accident kills Kugluktuk driver, injures three

Police suspect speed, lack of seatbelts

By PETER VARGA

A single-vehicle accident in Kugluktuk involving a four-door mid-sized pickup truck killed one person and inflicted major injuries on three of four passengers July 21. The one passenger who was wearing a seat belt survived the accident with only minor injuries. (FILE PHOTO)


A single-vehicle accident in Kugluktuk involving a four-door mid-sized pickup truck killed one person and inflicted major injuries on three of four passengers July 21. The one passenger who was wearing a seat belt survived the accident with only minor injuries. (FILE PHOTO)

Police in Kugluktuk are investigating a single-vehicle accident on July 21 that killed the driver and sent three of four passengers to hospital with serious injuries.

“We’ve spoken to independent witnesses, and it looks like it involved speed and lack of seat belts,” said Sgt. Ben Parry of the RCMP detachment in Kugluktuk.

RCMP responded to the scene of the accident, less than a kilometre outside the community on the road to the dump, at about 8:30 a.m. July 21.

Officers and emergency responders found the vehicle, a mid-sized GMC Canyon pickup, in a ditch by the side of the road.

Police surmised the pick-up truck rolled several times before it came to rest in the ditch, said Parry.

It appeared the driver had lost control while driving at high speed. The driver and one passenger were thrown clear of the truck.

“Another passenger went from the front passenger seat to the back passenger seat, so clearly he was not wearing a seat belt,” Parry said.

The driver and four passengers, one aged 16 and all others aged 22 to 26, were taken to the community health centre for medical attention.

The female driver, in her 20s, died of her injuries at the centre.

Three of the four passengers, all male, were medevaced south for treatment of serious injuries. Police confirmed July 22 that at least one was sent to hospital in Edmonton.

The fourth passenger “walked away uninjured, but for some bumps and bruises,” Parry said. “He was wearing a seat belt.”

“The laws are there for a reason,” Parry added. “This clearly illustrates the difference between wearing a seat belt and not wearing one.”

The vehicle was a four-door pickup with seating for five.

Police suspect alcohol may have been involved in the incident. No charges are pending. RCMP and the Nunavut coroner’s office are investigating.

Police are not releasing the names of those involved in the accident.

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