Montreal

Motorcycle safety expert Alain Boutin, wife Sylvie Boutin-Lachance stood 'no chance,' witness says

Riders with a Quebec City motorcycle club are rattled by the deaths of Alain Boutin, 65, and his wife, Sylvie Boutin-Lachance, 58, killed while riding in a convoy of five motorcycles on a club outing on Saturday.

Quebec City motorcycle club devastated by longtime members' deaths near Saint-Nazaire-de-Dorchester Saturday

Alain Boutin, 65, and his wife Sylvie Boutin-Lachance, 58, pictured here in 2012, were avid motorcyclists killed May 14 when an oncoming pickup truck swerved into their lane. (Facebook)

Riders with a Quebec City motorcycle club have been rattled by the deaths of Alain Boutin, 65, and his wife, Sylvie Boutin-Lachance, 58, fatally injured while riding in a convoy of five motorcycles on a club outing on Saturday.

The pair was killed while travelling westbound on Highway 216 near Saint-Nazaire-de-Dorchester, southeast of Quebec City, at about 2 p.m. on Saturday.

A pick-up truck travelling toward them swerved into their lane while taking a curve in the road, said Gaétan Poitras, who had been riding behind the couple when it happened.

Poitras said Boutin and his wife were struck hard by the side of the truck, and both were already dead when he approached.

'Hit full force'

"There was nothing that could be done. They had absolutely no, chance. They were hit full force," he said.

Three other motorcycle riders were in a convoy with Alain Boutin and Sylvie Boutin-Lachance when the couple's bike was struck, killing them on the spot, rider Gaétan Poitras said. (Radio-Canada)

Poitras said he's already been involved in three accicents, and since witnessing Saturday's incident, both his son and sister have pleaded with him to stop riding motorcycles. 

"They said, 'You have to stop. You aren't a cat. You don't have seven lives'," he told CBC's French-language service, Radio-Canada.

"For me, it's finished. It's finished," Poitras said.

Award-winning bike safety expert

The motorcycle club members riding with Alain Boutin and Sylvie Boutin-Lachance said the couple had no chance to avoid the pickup truck which swerved into them on Highway 216. (Radio-Canada)

Boutin, a mechanic who would have been 66 today, was a longtime member of the Association de Moto-tourisme de la Capitale, recognized by the club several times over the past 30 years for his commitment to safety.

"He was always safe on the road, very respectful," said fellow club member Christian Coté. "He's someone who never should have died."

Rise in motorcycle deaths

There has been a notable increase in the number motorcycle--related deaths on Quebec's roads.

Last year's 50 fatalities represented a five-year high and a 25 per cent increase over 2014,  according to the province's automobile insurance agency, the SAAQ.

However, Poitras said it's unfortunate that incidents like the one in which his friends died will be counted in the statistics.

"This was not a motorcycle accident: It was a automobile accident," Poitras said.

The truck's driver, a 36-year-old man from St-Adalbert, suffered minor injuries. Quebec provincial police say alcohol was not a factor.

with files from Radio-Canada

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