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Amber Alert

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

City crash leaves two dead

Two women are dead following a collision between a car and a tractor-trailer on the Charlottetown bypass highway Wednesday afternoon. A third woman, who was driving the car, was rushed from the scene to the Queen Elizabeth Hospital with undetermined injuries.The collision occurred at approximately 1:45 p.m. at the intersection of the arterial highway and Malpeque Road, near the Sears mall.

The force of the collision took the vehicles a few hundred feet from the intersection, with the tractor-trailer coming to rest partially off the highway.
One of the dozens of fire, ambulance and police personnel on the scene described the scene as horrific.

“We don’t usually see it this bad,’’ said the emergency service provider.
Deputy Police Chief Richard Collins said it appears the collision took place in the intersection.
“You can see the point of impact here at the (traffic) lights,’’ Collins said at the scene. “It’s obvious something went awry and the two vehicles collided in the intersection.’’
Collins said police know the tractor-trailer was travelling east on the arterial highway towards Mount Edward Road at the time of the collision but it wasn’t clear which direction the car was travelling.

“Whether the car was westbound and turning or southbound and turning, we don’t know at this point and time.’’ One woman, who was killed in the front passenger seat, was described by police as a woman in her mid-20s. The other woman killed was sitting in the back seat and described as in her mid-40s.

Firefighters had to use the Jaws of Life to extract the woman sitting in the back seat, who was pinned by the force of the collision. The male driver of the tractor-trailer, which had Nova Scotia plates, was not injured. Police were asking the media not to identify the make of the car until next of kin were notified. Dr. Charles Trainor, the province’s chief coroner, was at the scene as were two police traffic analysts and an accident reconstructionist.

“That indicates the severity of it,’’ Collins said.
Both Charlottetown fire department stations responded to the crash with emergency vehicles and fire apparatus. Debris from both vehicles, light standards and street signage littered the ground for hundreds of feet.

Police sealed off a large radius around the accident site for most of the afternoon, blocking traffic at Mount Edward Road-arterial highway, University Avenue and Malpeque Road, Sherwood Road and Malpeque Road, as well as the arterial highway and Upton Road.
Collins said it could take a while to determine exactly what happened.
“This is going to take a while to do,’’ the deputy chief said.