Friends are remembering a teen who was struck and killed by a motorcycle outside a Surrey high school during lunchtime on Wednesday as a sweet girl with a beautiful smile.
Amarpreet Sivia, 16, was walking across the street in front of her school, Princess Margaret Secondary, when a motorcycle hit her and two other girls. The motorcyclist and one of the pedestrians were taken to hospital in critical condition but are now stable. A third teen was less-seriously injured.
Mourners took to Twitter and Facebook following the incident. One classmate and Twitter user said “I know you’re gonna be looking down smiling at us all, your grad class! Forever in our hearts love, rest in paradise Amarpreet Sivia.”
Another said “Last year I met such a sweet girl who had an absolutely gorgeous smile. Rest in peace Amarpreet, prayers go out to the Sivia family.”
Others sent good wishes to the other victims, with one girl stating “Life goes so quickly,” and urging drivers to slow down.
The collision happened at about 11:30 a.m. Wednesday morning. Surrey RCMP said the yellow motorcycle was travelling southbound on 128 Street when it struck the girls near 69 Avenue. The driver and the teens were all unconscious when police initially arrived.
In wake of the accident, there has been a new call for a crosswalk at that location and Surrey is now re-examining such plans.
In July, 2011, the City of Surrey embarked on a study of the engineering requirements of all school areas within the city.
That included the strip along 128 Street that serves Kwantlen Polytechnic University and Princess Margaret Secondary where Wednesday’s collision occurred.
The study concluded that a crosswalk would be needed just south of 72 Avenue on 128 Street, according to Surrey’s General Manager of Engineering Vincent LaLonde.
The study found there was a high amount of pedestrian traffic at 72 Avenue (where there’s a lighted crossing) and also at 70 Avenue, which both have commercial areas that attract students.
The determination was to build a crosswalk 150 meters south of 72 Avenue in 2014.
LaLonde said he will be in touch with the RCMP to determine if the crosswalk is being planned for the best location.
Counsellors have been on-hand at the high school since Wednesday to assist students and staff in dealing with the tragedy.
During lunchtime on Thursday, school officials lined the sidewalk outside Princess Margaret Secondary on 128 Street, ensuring students used a nearby crosswalk instead of j-walking to get to businesses across the four-lane roadway.
Police remained on the scene Thursday morning, a bouquet of flowers tied to a tree near where the collision occurred. A speeding pick-up truck was pulled over while police were there.
Investigators attempted to re-create the moments before the accident, with two plain-clothes officers walking across the street, while another rode a motorcycle down different lanes at various speeds, wearing a camera on his helmet.
Surrey RCMP are looking to speak to the driver of a vehicle that was passed by the motorcyclist prior to Wednesday’s crash. The initial investigation, police said, has indicated the driver was in the slow lane when it changed lanes and went around another vehicle before colliding with the students.
“We’re looking for the driver and or passengers that might have seen that accident happen right in front of them,” said Surrey RCMP Cpl. Bert Paquet.
Anyone who witnessed the incident who has not spoken to police is asked to contact the Surrey RCMP Criminal Collision Investigation Team (CCIT) at 604-599-0502.
– by Sheila Reynolds and Kevin Diakiw