Ladysmith crash closes Trans Canada Highway for nearly 6 hours


WATCH: A crash on the Island Highway in Ladysmith this morning sent two people to hospital with serious injuries and shut down the Island Highway for close to six hours. As Kendall Hanson reports the crash happened at an intersection where those in Ladysmith are calling for more traffic control and a lower speed limit.

A compact car was totalled and a commercial truck heavily damaged at the Trans Canada Highway and South Davis road in Ladysmith on Monday.

At 6:20 a.m., a water drilling truck smashed into a Hyundai Elantra then into a cement median before coming to rest on its side.

“Ladysmith Fire, as well as EHS (Emergency Health Services), attended. A helicopter was launched by EHS and two patients were transported to the hospital, a 73-year-old male and a 62-year-old female,” said Const. Marcel Slofstra.

The couple suffered serious injuries. The truck’s driver was not injured.

Police said the car was crossing the highway.

“The commercial vehicle was required to take evasive action as a result of the actions of the passenger vehicle,” said Slofstra.

“We heard a bang and knew immediately that it was an accident,” said neighbour John McDonald.

Neighbours said a petition has been circulating in the community calling on BC’s Transportation Ministry to make changes to this exact crossing.

“Put in lights here, and put in merge lane and also put in a reduced speed limit,” said McDonald.

The speed limit is 90 kilometres an hour on the Island Highway here. Neighbours say crossing at South Davis is hazardous

“This is a bad corner,” said McDonald.

Ladysmith’s mayor agrees.

“I would advocate strongly that as you come into Ladysmith and cross through the thick road at our southern boundary that we would contemplate a speed reduction down to 70 kilometres an hour but also advocate for a controlled intersection at south Davis road,” said Mayor Aaron Stone.

The mayor says there have been other crashes at south Davis Road in the past.

Uprighting the commercial truck on Monday turned out to be no small feat. It required two large tow trucks from either side to slowly lift and lower the truck back onto its wheels. The centre median also needs replacement pieces.

Traffic was diverted through Ladysmith while the highway was closed for close to six hours.

The Ministry of Transportation said it has not received the petition but staff are reviewing traffic safety along the Ladysmith corridor, including the intersection of Davis Road and Highway 1 and expect to have more information available in the fall.

Kendall HansonKendall Hanson

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