April 20, 2017 2:45 pm
Updated: April 21, 2017 7:44 pm

Third person dies following train derailment near Woss Lake

WATCH: An investigation is underway into a deadly B.C. train derailment. John Hua has the impact this tragedy is having on the small tight, knit Vancouver Island community.


Three people have now died and two remain in hospital in serious condition following a train derailment near Woss Lake on Vancouver Island Thursday morning.

Two people died on the scene. A third person died in hospital on Friday morning.

The incident happened at 8:48 a.m. Thursday when train cars loaded with logs hit a speeder containing people. The cars were not connected to a train engine at the time. A speeder car is a rail vehicle used to transport workers on rail tracks.

The cars then derailed, dropping the logs and hitting an excavator nearby. The operator of that vehicle died.

“Somehow the cars got away and ran down the track, and, of course, it’s downhill,” said Dave Rushton, the community’s regional elected representative. “It’s all gravity feed. They ended up right in behind our community here. It’s amazing there wasn’t more damage done.”

WorkSafeBC dispatched officers to the scene and railway safety officers were also on-site.

Rushton said everybody in the community of about 200 people is aware of the accident and knows the victims. He said he originally feared his grandson was one of the injured because he was scheduled to be part of the rail crew, but his duties where shifted before the accident.

“We’ve got a couple hundred people here,” Rushton said. “Everybody’s in shock. We went for a long time without a lost time accident here. And now this.”

The names of the victims have not been released at this time.

The BC Coroners Service, the Transportation Safety Board and Worksafe BC are investigating the cause of the derailment.

Woss Lake on Vancouver Island.

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With files from The Canadian Press

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