One person has died after the transport truck they were driving fell through a road in southwest Middlesex County on Wednesday night.
Emergency crews were called to Dundonald Road just after 10 p.m. for a reported single vehicle collision.
In a video posted to Twitter Thursday morning, Provincial Const. Jeff Hare said that a transport truck had fallen through the road.
“Unfortunately, the driver succumbed to his injuries at the scene,” he said.
The driver was identified only as a 59-year-old from Mississauga, Ont.
While the investigation is ongoing, Hare noted that the crash came as the region experienced heavy rainfall.
Hare explained that due to “unprecedented storms” that came through the area, “the flooding, according to what some people are saying around here, was monumental.”
Some parts of southwestern Ontario were under various special weather statements and severe thunderstorm warnings on Wednesday as large amounts of rain fell throughout the day.
Chris Traini, county engineer with the County of Middlesex, says there is currently “no indication” that there was “any deficiency of the road,” based on previous road patrol reports.
“There are a number of reasons why the road could wash out and we will have to go in there and determine that,” he said, noting that the county will conduct an internal investigation focusing on the engineering of the road.
The section of road where the washout occurred falls under the county’s jurisdiction. He said road staff follow legislative requirements to inspect the roads on a regular basis.
He also stressed that the county road system is “structurally sound across the board” under typical conditions and even under some extreme conditions.
“I would tell the public that they should have confidence that the road infrastructure in Middlesex County is well maintained, in excellent condition and designed to handle the type of traffic we would expect in an agricultural community, heavy vehicles and transport trucks and passenger vehicles for sure,” he explained.
“But again, when we talk about these extreme weather events, whether it’s, you know, a blizzard, a tornado or an extreme rain event and a flood, drivers need to proceed with caution because we cannot design infrastructure to withstand some of these acts of God or these very extreme weather events.”
Dundonald Road will be closed between Buttonwood Drive and Carolinian Drive for the next couple of weeks as crews work to repair.
“We are experiencing other shut downs as well due to flooding and the roads being washed out,” Hare said. “What we’re asking is that everybody be patient while the roads get replaced and fixed.
“It’s obviously a hard day for everybody involved… Our deepest sympathies and condolences to the family and the first responders that were involved last night,” he added.
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