Died trying to help

Alanna Kelly

UPDATED: 2:30 p.m.

RCMP have released more information following a fatal six-car crash on the Coquihalla Highway Sunday. 

Police say a pedestrian was hit by a car while trying to help other drivers who were involved in another crash just before his death. 

It all happened around 12:30 p.m. south of Merrit near Larson Hill.

The 35-year-old Lower Mainland man was struck and killed. 

A 78-year-old man with critical injuries was taken to hospital in Kamloops by air ambulance; his condition has since been downgraded to “serious”.

Two other people were transported to a local area hospital with minor injuries.

The crash caused the northbound closure of the highway for 10 hours. 

RCMP believe the cause is a combination of speed relative to road conditions and sudden changes in road condition in shaded areas. 

Central Interior Traffic Services (CITS) RCMP, the Integrated Collision Analysis and Reconstruction Service and the BC Coroner’s Service continue to investigate this collision.

RCMP CITS in Merritt is asking that anyone with information regarding this collision who has not already spoken with police to contact Central Interior Traffic Services at 250-378-4262, quoting file 2018-644.

UPDATE: 9:40 a.m.

"At this time I do not have any (new) information. It is my understanding the highway is now open, but conditions at the time of the collision were icy, said Const. Mike Halskov with B.C. RCMP Traffic Services.

UPDATE: 9:30 p.m.

Police have finished their investigation at the scene of a fatal collision on the Coquihalla Highway Sunday.

Highway 5 is now fully open after the highway was closed between Hope and Merritt for over eight hours. 

Drive BC said "vehicle recovery is in progress" at 9:06 p.m. 

No further details have been released about the victim or how many people were injured in the incident.

UPDATE: 7:45 p.m.

Castanet has confirmed that at least one person is dead after a collision involving multiple vehicles on Highway 5 Sunday.

The collision is believed to have taken place at about 12:30 p.m., near the summit of Larson Hill south of Merritt.

Five vehicles including a tractor-trailer were involved, but it is unclear how many people were injured in the incident. 

BCEHS paramedics said one patient was transported to hospital by air ambulance in serious condition earlier in the day.

Three other people were transported to hospital by road in stable condition.

UPDATE: 7 p.m.

Unconfirmed reports indicate at least one person has been killed in a multiple vehicle collision on the Coquihalla Highway Sunday.

Castanet has reached out to RCMP and are awaiting a response.

Highway 5 northbound between Hope and Merritt has been closed for over six hours. 

"Southbound intermittent closures at Kingsvale for traffic analysts and crews working on the northbound closure. Expect delays to 20 minutes southbound," tweeted DriveBC at 7 p.m.

The section of Highway 5 is estimated to reopen at 10 p.m.

UPDATE: 2:50 p.m.

An air ambulance left the scene of a multiple vehicle collision involving a tractor-trailer just after 2 p.m.

Highway 5 remains closed northbound from Hope to Merritt, but one lane southbound at Kingsvale is open.

It is not clear the extent of injuries after the collision involving five vehicles. 

UPDATE: 1:17 p.m.

Paramedics are rushing to the scene of a multiple vehicle collision that has closed a section of the Coquihalla Highway.

A Castanet reader who was at the scene said at least five vehicles were involved in the incident.

The collision is believed to have occurred about 10 kilometres past the old toll area near Larson Hill.

Three ambulances are on scene and one air ambulance.

UPDATE: 1:15 p.m.

Major delays are occurring on Highway 5 just outside of Merritt after a multiple vehicle collision involving  a tractor-trailer.

Drive BC said "one lane southbound is getting through" at 1:15 p.m.

Highway 5 northbound is closed at Hope due to the incident.

Travellers are being advised to take Highway 1 or Highway 3 as an alternate routes.

ORIGINAL: 1 p.m.

A major collision involving multiple vehicles has closed a portion of the Coquihalla Highway Sunday.

Highway 5 is closed in both directions 35 kilometres south of Merritt, according to DriveBC.

A Castanet reader said at least five vehicles were involved including a tractor-trailer.

Police officers are on scene and it is not clear if anyone was injured in the incident.

The incident happened at about 12:25 p.m.

Drivers are being advised to take alternate routes.

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