February 25, 2019

Saskatchewan Coroners Service Completes Investigation Into Humboldt Collision

The Saskatchewan Coroners Service has completed its investigation into a collision between a coach bus and a semi-tractor trailer on April 6, 2018.  The collision occurred at the intersection of Highway 35 and Highway 335 in rural Saskatchewan.

The investigation has determined that 16 people died as a result of the collision.  In all of the deaths, the cause of death was injuries due to a motor vehicle collision.  The manner of death was accidental.

Pursuant to The Coroners Act, 1999, the following recommendations are being made:

  1. To the Deputy Minister, Ministry of Highways and Infrastructure:

That the Ministry of Highways and Infrastructure review their policy with respect to the installation of traffic control devices and signs at and in advance of the intersection, having regard to the sight lines and the expected speed and volume of traffic.

  1. To the Director, Saskatchewan Highway Patrol:

That the Saskatchewan Highway Patrol review their policy and operating procedures to ensure stricter compliance with respect to regulations and standards for commercial vehicle drivers.

  1. To the Chief Coroner, Saskatchewan Coroners Service:

That the Saskatchewan Coroners Service create and train staff with respect to a mass fatality plan.  This includes reviewing policy and standard operating procedures with respect to identifying the deceased.

  1. To the President and CEO, SGI:

That SGI work with the trucking industry to implement standardized and possibly mandatory training for truck drivers.

  1. To the CEO, Saskatchewan Health Authority:

That the Saskatchewan Health Authority review policy and standard operating procedures with respect to the identification of persons coming into their care resulting from a mass casualty/fatality event.

  1. To the Director, Road Safety Programs, Motor Vehicle Safety, Transport Canada:

That Transport Canada:

  • Continue supporting the development of regulations which enhance or improve the national safety codes with respect to driver training and electronic logging devices.

  • Create regulations mandating the installation of seatbelts in highway public transport buses.

The families and parties to whom the recommendations are directed have been provided with the report.

The chief coroner has determined that no inquest will be held.

Coroners are authorized to conduct investigations into all sudden, unexpected and unnatural deaths occurring in Saskatchewan.  The investigation is conducted in order to determine the identity of the deceased, and how, when, where and by what means the person died.