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Two pedestrians killed in early morning crash in Vancouver

Victims were teenage boys; police say driver did not appear to be impaired

By , Columbian Assistant Metro Editor
Published:
4 Photos
Police say a pickup was involved in the fatal pedestrian crash along Northeast 112th Avenue on Tuesday morning, Jan. 21, 2020.
Police say a pickup was involved in the fatal pedestrian crash along Northeast 112th Avenue on Tuesday morning, Jan. 21, 2020. (Amanda Cowan/The Columbian) Photo Gallery

Two teenage boys were struck and killed early Tuesday morning by a pickup in east Vancouver, according to police.

The crash occurred shortly before 6:30 a.m. near the intersection of Northeast 23rd Circle and 112th Avenue, east of Interstate 205.

The victims were a 14-year-old boy and a 17-year-old boy. Both died at the scene. Their identities were not released Tuesday, pending notification of next of kin, according to a Vancouver Police Department news release.

They were struck by a full-sized Chevrolet pickup after stepping off the curb and into the road. Both boys were wearing dark-colored clothing, police said.

Northeast 112th Avenue is a five-lane arterial with partial sidewalks; there are no sidewalks on the east side of the road in that area. There are streetlights but no traffic signal or crosswalk at that intersection.

Police department spokeswoman Kim Kapp said the driver, who has not been identified, remained on scene. Impairment on the part of the driver is not believed to be a factor.

“Early indications are that the driver did not see the pedestrians and was unable to stop in time before hitting them,” according to a police news release.

Chris White said the pickup driver is a 19-year-old man who works in the same department as him at SEH America. The manufacturing company is about a mile north of the crash scene.

White said he and his wife, Genevieve, were driving to work when they saw a pickup stopped in the road ahead of them. They recognized it as belonging to their co-worker. They thought he was having vehicle trouble and stopped to help.

The pickup driver was in a panic and speaking rapidly, White said. Then White noticed damage to the man’s truck and saw two people had been hit.

“He was just devastated and in shock. I can’t imagine what he was going through,” White said.

White called 911. Other cars stopped, and people performed CPR on the pedestrians, but there was no sign of life, Genevieve White said.

The couple heard the pickup driver say he was unaware anyone was in the road; he described only seeing shadows.

“I don’t think he even had time to step on the brakes. It was so, so sudden,” Chris White said.

The couple said there is a school bus stop in the area, but it was too early for children to be out waiting.

“He’s just a great kid. He’s so full of laughter, which I didn’t see in him, and I don’t know if I will for a long time after this,” Chris White said. “Our thoughts and prayers go out to him and the families.”

The crash is being investigated by the Vancouver Police Department Traffic Unit. A section of Northeast 112th Avenue was closed to traffic for several hours as part of the investigation.

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