Toronto woman, 31, killed after being struck by a vehicle on Highway 401
Woman died in the westbound collector lanes west of Markham Road following another collision
A Toronto woman, 31, was struck and killed by a vehicle while she was walking on Highway 401 in Scarborough on Friday night, Ontario Provincial Police say.
The woman died in the westbound collector lanes west of Markham Road, following a minor crash between two vehicles in the westbound express lanes. Emergency crews were called to the scene at about 11:15 p.m.
Sgt. Kerry Schmidt, spokesperson for the OPP's Highway Safety Division, said the incident began when two vehicles, one hauling a U-haul trailer, collided in the westbound express lanes between McCowan and Markham roads.
Police believe that the first vehicle hit the second vehicle with the U-haul, which then lost control. The U-haul became detached. The first vehicle then hit the second vehicle another time before the two vehicles came to a rest.
When officers arrived on the scene, they spoke to both drivers. The driver of one vehicle, which caused the collision, was outside of her vehicle, and within minutes of the first crash, she tried to cross the express lanes into the collectors, Schmidt said.
The woman was fatally struck by a third vehicle in the westbound collector lanes.
"When you are out on the highway, you are vulnerable," Schmidt said on Saturday. "You have no place to go. You have no place to escape. It is dark."
Toronto paramedics said the woman was pronounced dead on the scene.
Schmidt said police are trying to determine why she was trying to leave the scene and where she was intending to go. The circumstances around the crash and death are still under investigation.
A U-Haul trailer could be seen flipped over onto its side following the collision.
Police closed a section of the westbound collectors lanes at Markham Road and a section of the westbound express lanes at Morningside Avenue for hours, but both sets of lanes on the highway have since been reopened.
Several vehicles disregarded the signs closing the highway, Schmidt said, and at least two vehicles were stopped for failing to obey the closure.
Anyone with dashboard camera that may aid the investigation into the crash and the woman's death is urged to call the OPP.
Multiple vehicle fatal collision closes <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Hwy401?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#Hwy401</a> in <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Scarborough?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#Scarborough</a>. <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Hwy401?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#Hwy401</a> closed westbound at Morningside Rd in the Express lanes and Markham Rd in the Collectors lanes. Factors surrounding the collision are still under investigation by OPP.<a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/SlowDown?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#SlowDown</a> <a href="https://t.co/jlwXMRVtGc">pic.twitter.com/jlwXMRVtGc</a>—@OPP_HSD
With files from Muriel Draaisma