British Columbia

'He was about to get his life started': Cab driver dies after collision with Car2Go in East Vancouver

Sanehpal ​​​​Singh Randhawa, who died early Sunday morning, had worked for Yellow Cab since 2015.

Sanehpal ​​​​Singh Randhawa, who died early Sunday morning, had worked for Yellow Cab since 2015

Randhawa was taken to hospital, where he was pronounced dead. (Sanehpal ​​​​Singh Randhawa/Facebook)

An early-morning crash Sunday between a taxi and a smart car in East Vancouver killed 28-year-old cab driver Sanehpal ​​​​Singh Randhawa.

Yellow Cab president Kulwant Sahota confirmed Randhawa's death to CBC News on Sunday morning.

Sahota said Randhawa had worked for Yellow Cab since 2015.

Randhawa is described as hardworking by his friend Harmandeep Singh Randhawa (no relation) and committed to his family.

"He was about to get his life started, everything was all sorted out. Nobody expected this," said Harmandeep Singh Randhawa.

"He was a really hardworking man. He talked to his family every day."

Randhawa had just put a down payment on a new condo in Surrey and was set to move in the new year, according to Sahota. 

A smartcar booked through the company Car2Go collided with a Yellow Cab carrying two passengers, sending the taxi into the Royal Bank on the southeast corner. (Ryan Stelting)

Vancouver police said the crash sent three other people to hospital. VPD's Collision Investigation Unit is now collecting evidence and believes speed and alcohol were factors.

The collision happened around 3:30 a.m. PT Sunday at the intersection of 1st Avenue and Renfrew Street, police said.

A Car2Go Smart car collided with the taxi, which was carrying two passengers. The crash sent the cab into the Royal Bank on the southeast corner.

VPD officers and paramedics responded. Both drivers were taken to hospital, where Randhawa was pronounced dead.

The other driver, a man in his 20s, is in hospital with serious injuries. The two cab passengers were taken to hospital with non-life-threatening injuries.

It appears the driver of the Car2Go may have t-boned the taxi after running a red light, according to police.

B.C.'s police watchdog, the Independent Investigations Office, has been notified, as it's believed the driver of the Car2Go may have evaded officers at an impaired-driving roadblock prior to the collision.

It appears the driver of the Car2Go may have t-boned the taxi after running a red light, according to police. (Ryan Stelting)

'I'll miss him'

Harmandeep Singh Randhawa said both he and Randhawa moved from Punjab, India, to Brampton, Ont., in 2010. 

They lived together during their first few years in Canada as they studied computer programing at Sheridan College. Sanehpal ​​​​eventually moved to Calgary, then Vancouver.

Most of Randhawa's family live in Punjab, India, according to Sahota and Harmandeep Singh Randhawa. 

"It is unbelievable what happened. I'll miss him. We had really good memories together. That's what he left with us," said Harmandeep Singh Randhawa.

Anyone who witnessed the collision, or saw the vehicles driving prior to the crash, is asked to call the VPD Collision Investigation Unit at 604-717-3012.

The intersection was re-opened around 8:45 a.m. on Sunday morning.

Police say this is Vancouver's 14th traffic-related fatality of 2019.

VPD's Collision Investigation Unit is now collecting evidence, and believes speed and alcohol were factors. (Ryan Stelting)

With files from Nadia Jannif and Estefania Duran

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