Three young women are dead, one man is fighting for his life in hospital, and a small child is lucky to be alive, say police who were at the scene of Sundays horrific crash on the Malahat.
The head-on collision sheared one vehicle in half, say Shawnigan Lake RCMP, who confirmed that a southbound vehicle crossed the centre line and slammed into a northbound vehicle around 11:30 a.m.
The three fatalities were all in the same vehicle, but it is unclear from police statements which vehicle they were in.
Paramedics transported five people to hospital. Two patients are in critical condition and three others are stable, B.C. Ambulance reported.
Sgt. Rob Webb of Shawnigan Lake RCMP said he has never seen an accident as bad as this one. One child is lucky to be alive, he explained. Emergency responders at the scene told him her survival was nothing short of a miracle.
Im happy to report that apparently shes doing quite well, Webb said.
Police were still trying to contact family members Sunday afternoon and would not reveal too many details about the crash. Some reports indicate a truck may have been invovled and a small car is nearly unrecognizable.
Its been a horrible day, and were doing our best to help out the families and get the road open as soon as possible, Webb said.
Traffic on the Trans-Canada Highway had been closed in both directions until police opened it after 4 p.m.
Motorists report wet and slippery road conditions with rain and fog over parts of the highway.
The provincial government has plans to install about 5.4 kilometres of centre-line dividers along the Malahat, which is known for having fatal head-on collisions.
About 1.4 km of those medians were installed this summer, stretching north from Goldstream Provincial Park and connecting to existing medians on whats called Tunnel Hill.
Work to install barriers and widen the highway near Shawnigan Lake Road was expected to begin this fall.
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