Death toll rises to 15 after truck hits bus carrying hockey team
4/7/2018 10:44:50 PM EST
The death toll has increased to 15 with more than a dozen others injured after a semi-truck crashed into a bus carrying a junior hockey team in Canada, authorities said Saturday afternoon.
According to police, 29 people, including the driver, were on board the bus when it was hit by a semi on Friday evening in Saskatchewan.
The Humboldt Broncos were on their way to play a semifinal game against the Nipawin Hawks when the collision occurred.
"We can now confirm fourteen people have died as a result of this collision," a statement from the Royal Canadian Mounted Police read. "The other fourteen people were sent to hospitals with a variety of injuries; three of these people have injuries that are critical in nature."
Authorities have not released names or details beyond that for the team and staff.
The driver of the truck was not hurt, according to assistant commissioner Curtis Zablocki of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, who spoke at a news conference Saturday afternoon. He said the driver, who was not in custody, was receiving mental health assistance.
The father of team captain Logan Schatz and the wife of head coach Darcy Haugan confirmed they were both among the dead, according to ESPN.
Humboldt team president Kevin Garinger said the community was devastated by the news.
"It's one of the hardest days of my life," Garinger said. "There have been multiple fatalities. Our whole community is in shock, we are grieving, and we will continue to grieve throughout this ordeal as we try to work toward supporting each other."
Garinger said he and family members are waiting to get more information.
"We don't know who has passed, and we don't expect to know right away," said Garinger. "We know that the coroner and their office needs to do their work and let families know."
Canadian prime minister Justin Trudeau offered his sympathies on Twitter.
"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," his tweet read.
The Saskatchewan Junior Hockey League is for North American-born players between the ages of 16 and 20 years old.
--Field Level Media