Pedestrian struck to death in 2022: no complete stop for the trucker, and the victim distracted by his phone

A truck driver whose vision was obstructed by his imposing hood had not completed his mandatory stop before crushing to death, in 2022, a young pedestrian possibly distracted by her phone, reveals a recent coroner’s report.

• Read also: A pedestrian in her thirties struck to death by a heavy goods vehicle in L’Île-des-Sœurs

“It’s very sad, but unfortunately these are situations that we are going to see more and more of if people do not change their behavior,” worries André Durocher, director of community relations and road safety at CAA-Quebec.

“Notwithstanding the principle of the most vulnerable, we must at all times, when we are on public roads, be aware of our environment if we want to avoid tragedies,” he adds.

André Durocher, while he worked for the City of Montreal Police Department.

Photo Agence QMI, MARIO BEAUREGARD

On the morning of December 5, 2022, Kaur Gagandeep was on her way to the daycare where she worked when she got off the bus, in the L’Île-des-Sœurs district of Montreal.

It was while she was taking a pedestrian crossing on Place du Commerce that her life drastically ended.

While the bus was in the right lane, the driver of a semi-trailer truck hit and threw the 29-year-old young woman, who died under the wheels of the heavy goods vehicle.


The body of Kaur Gagandeep, 29, was covered by authorities after she was hit by a trucker in December 2022.

Photo Agency QMI, MAXIME DELAND

Distracted

According to images obtained by the police, the 30-year-old driver, who was driving at low speed, “had not completely immobilized his vehicle at the compulsory stop” and “no trace of braking” was spotted, indicates the coroner’s report Me Amélie Lavigne.

The police also blame a lack of visibility for the driver in this fatal accident, due to the height of the vehicle’s hood, as well as inattention on his part.

No calls or text messages were recorded on his cell phone at the time of the tragedy.

A “lack of attention” from Kaur Gagandeep could also be considered. The coroner mentions “vision obstructed by his hood” and “handling his phone”. The victim may have had an earpiece in his ear, according to first responders.

We therefore do not know whether the young woman had seen the heavy goods vehicle before venturing into the street.

It was an accidental death, according to M.e Vine.

“There was still a failure to comply with the mandatory stop by the driver. It is not an accidental death when there is a failure to respect an important element of road safety,” reacts Sandrine Cabana-Degani, general director of Piétons Québec.


The body of Kaur Gagandeep, 29, was covered by authorities after she was hit by a trucker in December 2022.

Sandrine Cabana-Degani, general director of Piétons Québec

Photo provided by Sandrine Cabana-Degani

“Trucks are over-represented in fatal collisions with pedestrians,” she laments.

No charges

Montreal police confirmed Newspaper that the file had not been presented to the Director of Criminal and Penal Prosecutions. No charges were therefore filed.

Before bringing the case to court, “investigators must have reasonable grounds to believe that a criminal offense has been committed,” underlines Mélanie Bergeron, communications manager.

For her part, Coroner Lavigne recommends to the Association of Police Directors of Quebec, in collaboration with the Société de l’assurance automobile du Québec, to “intensify” operations encouraging motorists to respect the law, such as stops complete mandatory.

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