October 17, 2018

14 reported killed in bus crash involving Canadian junior hockey team

A crash between a transport truck and a bus carrying a junior hockey team in Western Canada has left 14 people dead and others seriously injured, according to Canadian media.

The bus was carrying the Humboldt Broncos of the Saskatchewan Junior Hockey League to the town of Nipawin for a playoff game.

It collided with a transport truck.

"There have been multiple fatalities — our whole community is in shock," said Kevin Garinger, president of the Broncos.

The Royal Canadian Mounted Police have not said how many people died or were injured in the crash.

Mr Garinger said parents from across Western Canada are rushing to the scene as they struggle to cope with the tragedy.

"It's a horrible accident, my God," said Darren Opp, president of the Nipawin Hawks hockey team, "it's very, very bad."

Mr Opp said a semi T-boned the players' bus, adding that the coaching staff and players from the Hawks are waiting to help.

"They are sitting in the church just waiting to hear any good news," he said.

"There's uncles and moms and dads waiting to hear whether their sons and nephews are OK."

Hockey players pose for a group photo.

Pastor Jordan Gadsby at the Apostolic Church in Nipawin said more than a hundred people gathered at the church.

"Some of them are waiting to hear if their kids are alive."

Mr Garinger, who has one of the players living in his home, said they still do not know his fate.

"We don't know who has passed and we don't expect to know right away," he said.

"We know that the coroner and their office need to do their work and let families know."

Kevin Henry, a coach who runs a hockey school in Prince Albert, said people are in shock.

"It is sort of every parent's worst nightmare.

"This is I would think one of the darkest days in the history of Saskatchewan, especially because hockey is so ingrained in how we grow up here," Mr Henry said.

The Saskatchewan Junior Hockey League is a Junior "A" hockey league under Hockey Canada, which is part of the Canadian Junior Hockey League.

It is open to North American-born players between the ages of 16 and 20.

The Canadian police said the collision occurred late Friday afternoon.

"I cannot imagine what these parents are going through, and my heart goes out to everyone affected by this terrible tragedy, in the Humboldt community and beyond," Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau tweeted.


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