UPDATE: Police watchdog looking into high velocity crash on Highway 33

A motor vehicle incident has closed Highway 33 in both directions

The RCMP has now asked the Independent Investigations Office of B.C. to look into the high impact crash that closed Highway 33.

“Just after 3 a.m. on June 20 a police officer with the Kelowna RCMP was conducting routine patrol along Highway 33 when he observed a vehicle travelling at a high rate of speed drive by him in the opposite direction. The officer turned around and continued to observe the vehicle and its erratic movements,” reads a statement from Staff Sgt. Annie Lintau.

“The vehicle ultimately crossed into oncoming lanes and struck a wall. Three occupants were ejected from the vehicle and the officer immediately called for assistance. Three occupants and the driver were transported to hospital with what are believed to be serious injuries. No other persons were injured in the incident.”

The scene was closed off and Kelowna Municipal Traffic Services were called in and they are investigating the motor vehicle collision. The area around Highway 33 and Highway 97 are impacted by the collision and traffic is being re-routed. Unknown how long the roads will be closed for.

The Independent Investigation Office of BC have been notified and will determine if there is any link between police actions and the motor vehicle collision.

As the matter is now under investigation by the IIO BC, no further information will be released by police. Anyone who witnessed this incident is asked to contact the IIO BC at 1-855-446-8477.

Please note that aspects and circumstances of this incident will be the subject of independent investigation and verification by the IIO BC. For more information about the IIO BC and media updates, you can visit its website at www.iiobc.ca.

ORIGINAL 8 A.M.

Debris from an early moring car crash has been scattered across a one block radius between Nickel and Kneller roads in Rutland.

The car involved in the single vehicle crash is “thrashed” said a witness on site and Highway 33 has been closed in both directions at the junction of Highway 97 to Gerstmar Road in Kelowna.

Witness accounts on how many people were involved in the crash vary, though it’s believed that that three to four people, as well as a dog, were involved in the incident that happened some time around 2: 30 a.m.

“Two were taken to hospital and one was handcuffed at the scene,” said the witness, who asked to remain anonymous.

The vehicle was believed to be travelling west on Highway 33, when it veered over a a sidewalk and hit a concrete fence.

The dog was taken to a veterinarian with seemingly serious injuries, the Capital News reporter on scene has been told.

DriveBC is reporting that there is an alternate route available for vehicles on Ziprick Road to Springfield Road. Semi-trucks are advised to use the detour at Springfield Road and Rutland Road.

There is no estimated time for opening and an assessment is in progress. The next update is expected to occur at 11 a.m.

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