Montreal

Teen may have been texting when he slammed into oncoming car, police say

Officials say it's possible an 18-year-old driver may have been texting when he slammed head-on into an oncoming car in Mercier, Que., Wednesday night, seriously injuring three people — including a child. 

Three people seriously injured in collision in Mercier, Que., including 10-year-old boy

The collision happened on Route 138, also known as St-Jean Baptiste Boulevard, in Mercier, Que., Southwest of Montreal. (Alain Béland/Radio-Canada)

Officials say it's possible an 18-year-old driver may have been texting when he slammed head-on into an oncoming car in Mercier, Que., Wednesday night, seriously injuring three people — including a child. 

Because neither driver involved in the crash appears to have been inebriated, police are looking into the possibility that the young driver was distracted by his phone when he crossed the centre line, according to municipal spokesperson Vincent Lanctôt who speaks for local police.

The collision happened on Route 138 at around 9 p.m. The young southbound driver, a Mercier resident, drifted off course and hit the northbound driver, Lanctôt said.

"The collision was violent," he said.

Two women in the northbound car were transported to a local hospital with broken bones while a boy, age 10, was taken to Ste-Justine Hospital in Montreal in critical condition, Lanctôt said. All three are from Châteauguay.

The boy was placed in an induced coma. As of last night, he was in stable condition, but Lanctôt had no new updates early Thursday morning.

The 18-year-old driver, lightly injured, may face criminal charges if it is found he was texting at the time of the crash.

"It's under investigation," Lanctôt said. "For that reason, I can't say more."

Sûreté du Québec were on the scene Wednesday night, offering assistance as the child's life was deemed to be in danger. If the child dies, provincial police will take over the investigation.

The road was closed overnight, but Route 138, also known as St-Jean Baptiste Boulevard, was reopened by 5 a.m.

Mercier is located Southwest of Montreal. Route 138 connects to the Mercier Bridge.

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