A police cruiser blocks a lane of the Outer Ring Road Tuesday following a fatal accident. - Photo by Andrew Robinson/The Telegram
Transportation Minister Tom Hedderson told reporters Wednesday that the man killed in a vehicle-pedestrian accident on the Outer Ring Road Tuesday afternoon was an employee from his department.
He described the accident as a “terrible shock” when he heard about it Tuesday.
“I would like to take this opportunity to extend our deepest, deepest condolences to the family, friends (and) co-workers of our valued employee.”
Hedderson said in addition to the police and Occupational Health and Safety investigations, the provincial government is conducting an internal investigation of the accident.
Meanwhile, the Royal Newfoundland Constabulary has ruled out the possibility of speed playing a role in the accident.
Const. Suzanne FitzGerald described the lead-up to the accident in an email to The Telegram.
“From the preliminary information the RNC have analyzed thus far, it appears as though the eastbound SUV was travelling behind several vehicles in the curb lane and when the vehicles in front of him slowed rather suddenly, the driver swerved into the median lane to avoid a rear-end collision. It was then that the driver lost control of the vehicle and collided with the three men.”
The RNC said late Wednesday the injuries sustained by the two men sent to hospital are now considered to be non-life-threatening.
A mechanical inspection by the RNC of the SUV involved in the accident is underway, and FitzGerald said while the major crime unit has already interviewed numerous drivers and witnesses, the RNC is still encouraging witnesses to contact them.
The deceased male in his 50s was represented by the Newfoundland and Labrador Association of Public and Private Employees (NAPE).
“It is an extremely sad day when an employee loses his life in the service of the people of Newfoundland and Labrador,” said president Carol Furlong in a statement released Wednesday.
“All NAPE members are saddened as we reflect on the loss of a colleague.”